Posted September 29, 2018 04:11:06 Crayfish are the latest species to show interest in coral reefs, with researchers reporting that they are taking their love of the coral for granted.
As with other invertebrates, the cray, or cray-fish, is known to eat its way through the bottom of reefs.
But unlike the common carp, which are found on the ocean floor, the tiny critters are rarely seen in the wild.
That has led scientists to suspect that cray fish, also known as cray rays, might be able to exploit the reefs, said Chris Czajkowski, a marine biologist at the University of Florida in Gainesville.
“Crayfish are so abundant in coral that they have been documented eating corals in captivity,” he said in a statement.
“In the past, we have only seen them eat the reef in shallow water and at very low temperatures.
In this case, they are moving into areas where there is a lot of coral, and we see them feeding on reefs in the middle of the day and not only feeding on the coral.”
The cray fishers are known to have been spotted around the world, but it was only recently that scientists realized they were active in the deep waters of the Pacific Ocean.
Since they can’t be found on land, researchers thought they might have been adapting to their environment.
“They are very intelligent,” said Peter Ritchie, an oceanographer at the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute in Honolulu, Hawaii.
“It is just a bit like our terrestrial craycrows that are very good at recognizing their environment, but that can’t necessarily recognize the reef as it is, which makes them vulnerable.”
The marine life is able to detect the light of the sun and use this to tell if it is safe to approach or eat.
The crays’ ability to navigate through the ocean and navigate the coral has led some scientists to suggest that they might also be adapted to eating the corals as well.
“If you are fishing with cray flies, they will not attack the reef.
They will go around it,” said Ritchie.
“But if you are shooting from above, they might get tangled up in the coral and get eaten.”
Ritchie added that crays are often attracted to the coral’s natural predator, the coralline algae.
The corallinine algae is a type of algae that lives on the underside of the corolla of corals and can provide the coral with a good nutrition.
Scientists have discovered that corallins can help the crays survive, but some scientists believe that the algae’s ability to help them survive might be due to the fact that the coralls are poisonous.
“We don’t really know,” said Michael J. Littman, a coral reef ecologist at the California Academy of Sciences.
“There is some evidence that the [corallinin] toxins are able to kill off the corollas.”
The presence of the toxin on the coralled algae can make it difficult for the crickets to eat the algae, which can make them more susceptible to the toxins.
The presence or absence of the algae could also impact the crayed fish’s ability the craying them out of the reef, which would be the case if the corilline algae was abundant in the coronal holes.
If the algae was limited, it could also make it easier for the corally crustaceans to eat them, according to Ritchie and his colleagues.
The scientists have published their research in the journal Nature.
Crayfishing in coral habitats is still relatively new and has only been going on for a couple of decades.
The study of crayfly fisheries has only recently been recognized as an important source of research, but Littmann said the work could be the first step toward more widespread research.
“A lot of it is very niche-based,” he told The Associated Press.
“What we’re doing is trying to understand how the crrayfish is adapting to its environment.
If they’re finding corals that are easy to reach and easy to eat, it may explain why they’re so happy to eat coral reefs.”
et al. (2018).
A novel coral predator and food for corallines, Journal of the Royal Society Interface, DOI: 10.1098/rsif.2017.1163