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What are some facts about crawfish?

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Quick Answer

Crawfish, sometimes also called crayfish or crawdads, come in over 500 different species, though only two of them are harvested for human consumption. Crawfish can drown, and they are equipped with a set of inner gills that allow them to breathe outside water. As of 2016, Louisiana is the only U.S. state to have an official state crustacean: the crawfish.

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Full Answer

April is the best time of the year for crawfish fishing, because the entire population consists of adults in the midst of mating season. This means all the specimens are decently sized with plenty of excess juicy flesh due to springtime feeding. The best way to catch crawfish is with a trap, as they can easily escape the hand. Best baits are extremely strong in scent, such as the guts of dead fish.

Crawfish are small creatures that do not survive well in freezing conditions, thus they tend to prefer bodies of water with moving current, particularly brooks and rivers. Crawfish spend the vast majority of their time on the water floor where finding food among decaying matter is easier and where they can access rock formations for protection from predators. While crawfish are rarely seen on the water's surface during daylight hours, they can often be seen at night with the aid of a light source, feeding on living matter.

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