News Archives

Archive for 2016

Horseshoe Crabs in the Americas


State of Rhode Island Tightens Horseshoe Crab Harvest Regulations

Rhode Island: Rhode Island’s horseshoe crab population is not plummeting, it is not increasing, either, so the state is trying to manage the stock to ensure its long term survival, while considering the needs of commercial harvesters. Following a Dec. 5 hearing that included submissions from the Rhode Island Marine Fisheries Council, scientists, commercial harvesters and Save the Bay, the Rhode Island Department of Environmental Management is expected to approve new amendments to regulations governing the horseshoe crab harvest. The changes will take effect on Jan. 1, 2017. download the pdf.


American Horseshoe Crab is Vulnerable to Extinction

USA: The IUCN Horseshoe Crab Species Specialist Group recently determined that based on Red List criteria the American horseshoe crab is Vulnerable to extinction, which is an elevated level of risk compared to the previous Red List assessment completed in 1996.  The scientific assessment which provided the basis for the Red List assessment has been peer-reviewed and published in Reviews in Fish Biology and Fisheries. The citation is: Smith, D. R., H. J. Brockmann, M. Beekey, T. L. King, M. J. Millard, and J. Zaldívar Rae. 2016. Status assessment of the American horseshoe crab (Limulus polyphemus). Reviews in Fish Biology and Fisheries doi:10.1007/s11160-016-9461-y., and is available at , ERDG’s “Research” and “News” sections download the pdf.


Unlocking the Mysteries to Early Life on Earth

Canada: Before North America was a continent — before animals, before plants and trees, before land plates shifted — the area that is now the Grand Rapids Uplands in Manitoba was located near the equator. The Earth’s temperature was higher. There was less oxygen. Volcanos stewed. The world was different. Download the pdf.


Creating a ‘Living Shoreline’ with Reef Balls

Connecticut: Meandering rows of the thousand-pound dome-shaped cement balls create an artificial reef. Each ball is punctuated with holes that allow the tide and small sea creatures through. Over the past couple years the reef, planted just off shore, has begun to not only stop erosion but reverse it. download the pdf.


ASMFC Horseshoe Crab Management Board Sets 2017 Harvest Quotas for the Delaware Bay Region

Delaware Bay: The Commission’s Horseshoe Crab Management Board approved the harvest specifications for horseshoe crabs of Delaware Bay origin. Under the Adaptive Resource Management (ARM) Framework, the Board set a harvest limit of 500,000 Delaware Bay male horseshoe crabs and zero female horseshoe crabs for the 2017 season. download the pdf.


Project to Restore Horseshoe Crab Spawning Beach at Mispillion Harbor

Delaware: Mispillion Harbor has been fragile since a fast-moving winter storm in January 1992 caused significant damage and erosion. Several major storms since then, including a Mother’s Day weekend nor’easter in 2008, Hurricane Irene in 2011 and Hurricane Sandy in 2012, caused more sand loss and damage. download the pdf.


Scientists Seek Ways for Oyster Farms, Red knots to Co-exist on Delaware Bay

New Jersey: Joe Moro sold his restaurant in West Chester, Pennsylvania, several years ago and retired to North Cape May and the life of a Delaware Bay oyster farmer. Now he spends five days a week doing manual labor on the mud flats of the bay at low tide, growing oysters known as Cape May Salts. download the pdf.


Horseshoe Crab Harvest, Threatened Red knot at Odds

South Carolina: The blue blood crab versus the bird that “flies to the moon.” That’s a fight state and federal regulators don’t want to referee. But the latest conservationist move to force a critical habitat designation for the threatened red knot has them worried. download the pdf.


Rare Horseshoe Crab Fossil Named in Honor of Nova Scotia Woman

Canada: In the scientific paper, detailing the work of Mansky and two scientists from the New Mexico Museum of Natural
History and Science, an extremely rare horseshoe crab fossil from Nova Scotia is described as a new species. download the pdf.


Horseshoe Crabs in Asia


Rampaging Rays Likely Behind Massacre of Horseshoe Crabs

Japan: A suspect has been named as the guilty party in the mysterious deaths here of 500 horseshoe crabs, a species that has seen an alarming decrease in numbers recently. The suspect’s name is ray–the fish, that is. And not just regular-sized rays, but jumbo ones. “Crabs have been bit by rays, which spread an infectious disease among them,” said Makoto Yukimura, 66, a volunteer worker at the local Kabutogani Jimankan museum. “That may have resulted in the large number of deaths.” download the pdf.


Horseshoe Crab Habitat in Bengal Under Threat

India: The name of West Bengal has surfaced at the world congress of the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN), which is presently being held at Hawaii, for all the wrong reasons. The horseshoe crab – a ‘living fossil that has outlived even the dinosaurs – is now facing the threat of extinction in the coastal areas of West Bengal and Odisha. They are not found anywhere else in India. download the pdf.


Protected Horseshoe Crabs Set Free in China

China: 1,000 nationally protected horseshoe crabs (Tachypleus tridentatus), were seized by border police from a boat in Beihai, South China’s Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region. download the pdf.


Research Seeks to End Need for Blood of Horseshoe Crabs

Taiwan: The Kinmen County Fisheries Research Institute and National Tsing Hua University are collaborating on a research project aimed at eliminating the need to use horseshoe crab blood in tests to detect bacterial contamination in drugs and intravenous devices as well as other medical items. download the pdf.


Horseshoe Crabs in Europe


bioMérieux Acquires Hyglos and Expands its Offering to the Detection of Endotoxins in Pharmaceutical Products

Germany: bioMérieux, a global player in in vitro diagnostics and world leader in industrial microbiological control, announces the acquisition of Hyglos, a Bernried (Germany) – based company specializing in the detection of endotoxins. Founded in 2009, Hyglos has a unique and recognized expertise in the development and production of recombinant proteins used for the detection of endotoxins in pharmaceutical products. download the pdf.

ERDG in the News


G.A. Stetson Middle School’s First Lego League Team “Robocalypse” Wins Regional Championship

Pennsylvania: Robocalypse is the first group of students to partner with the ERDG’s initiative “Protecting Health” to save the world’s four horseshoe crabs species. download the pdf.


Frazier Writes About the Tucked-away Pockets of American Life

New York: Frazier writes about the tucked-away pockets of American life and beyond, including the forgotten or little-known places. His topics include the more than 1,000,000 marginalized homeless in New York City and Charles Manson’s desert hideaway on the Barker ranch in Death Valley. Although Harvard-educated, he has an affinity for the blue- collar and working poor, writing sometimes in the tradition of Studs Terkel and Mark Twain. Frazier is concerned with the questions, not grand summations of providing thinly veiled advocacy through answers. He eschews the perceived wisdom and allows the subject matter to unfold. download the pdf.


Lonza to Continue Sponsoring Horseshoe Crab Conservation Initiatives Through 2016

Delaware: Lonza has announced continued sponsorship throughout 2016 of horseshoe crab conservation initiatives by the Ecological Research &
Development Group (ERDG), based in Delaware (USA). download the pdf.


Coronado High School Freshman Wins International Competition

California: Lacey Brauer, currently a Coronado High School freshman, recently learned that she won an international competition. Last year, her Coronado Middle School 8th grade English teacher Jennifer Landry entered her essay ” A Crab’s Lifetime” in the Ecological Research & Developments Group (ERDG), Young Voices, Horseshoe Crabs and the Arts annual competition. Lacey competed against over 400 students from the U.S., India, Japan and Hong Kong and was among the 31 selected winners. Lacey is currently enrolled in the CoSA DigArts program. A Crab’s Lifetime


Changing Global Perspectives on Horseshoe Crab Biology, Conservation and Management

This book reports significant progress of scientific research on horseshoe crabs, including aspects of evolution, genetics, ecology, population dynamics, general biology and physiology, within the recent 10 years. It also highlights the emerging issues related to world-wide conservation threats, status and needs. The contributions in this book represent part of an ongoing global effort to increase data and concept sharing to support basic research and advance conservation for horseshoe crabs. ERDG is a contributing author and highlighted and/or co-author of several additional papers throughout out the book. The most important of which is Current horseshoe crab harvesting practices cannot support global demand for TAL/LAL: the pharmaceutical and medical device industries’ role in sustainability of horseshoe crabs.