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Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Cuba beach invaded by millions of crabs

Cuba beach invaded by millions of crabs
By NBC News
Published: April 25, 2017, 12:39 pm

CIENAGA DE ZAPATA, Cuba (NBC News) — Cuba's Bay of Pigs has been invaded
again, this time not by U.S. backed anti-Castro forces, but by millions
of red, yellow and black landcrabs.

Each year, after the first spring rains, the crabs march for days from
the surrounding forests to the bay on Cuba's southern coast to spawn in
the sea, wreaking havoc along the way.

At dawn and dusk they emerge, scuttling sideways toward the sea,
climbing up house walls and carpeting the coastal road that curves
around the bay.

The stench of crushed crab fills the air and their sharp shells puncture
car tires.

The Bay of Pigs, where in 1961 Cuban exiles landed in a failed attempt
to end Fidel Castro's revolution, lies within a national park where 80
percent of Cuba's endemic birds, along with crocodiles and other
wildlife, can be observed. With its deep sinkholes, coral reefs and
turquoise waters, the bay is known as one of Cuba's best spots for diving.

Cubans believe this type of prolific species, which are not endemic to
Cuba, is toxic. As cars speed by, some swerving to avoid the ten-legged
crustaceans, the cracks of carapaces zing through the air.
"Seeing all these crabs at the moment is nothing like what we've seen
before, it's just amazing to see the whole road covered," said
Australian tourist Kaliash Attwar.

Similar crab migrations occur in other parts of Cuba at the same time of
the year, as well as in some other special ecosystems such as
Australia's Christmas Island.

Source: Cuba beach invaded by millions of crabs | NBC4i.com -
http://nbc4i.com/2017/04/25/cuba-beach-invaded-by-millions-of-crabs/
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