mud crab

White-tipped mud crab

The white-tipped mud crab (Rhithropanopeus harrisii) is a small omnivorous crab, also known as the Zuiderzee crab (see Zuider Zee) or dwarf crab .

Rhithropanopeus harrisii reaches a maximum size of 20 mm. It has an olive-green-brownish color, sometimes with dark spots on its carapace, and it owes its vernacular name to its white-tipped claws.

The white-tipped mud crab is usually found in brackish water, but can also be found in freshwater. It likes to live on stones and in oyster beds. It is a common inhabitant of Texas and Florida estuaries, but was later introduced all over the world. In 1937, Rhithropanopeus harrisii was discovered to be invading the San Francisco Bay's brackish waters and adjacent fresh waters of the California Central Valley. It was also recently discovered in the Third Lock Lake in Panama, a man-made lake intended to be a part of the Panama Canal.

Breeding populations have been found in the Brazos river basin in Texas, notably the Possum Kingdom and Granbury Lakes.

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