Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Blow Dealt to the Red Knot

Caption: The “Red Knot” photograph is by kingstonmike, as downloaded from flickr.com.
As if to rub salt in an open wound, the New Jersey Marine Fisheries Council voted 5-4 on Monday (2/11/2008) to reject a ban on the harvest of horseshoe crabs to protect migratory birds that feed on the crab’s eggs. Ironically, the vote came less than 24 hours after the airing of Crash: A Tale of Two Species, a documentary in the PBS series NATURE that investigated the impact of declining populations of horseshoe crabs on shorebirds, such as the Red Knot (Calidris canutus), that depend on the availability of horseshoe crab eggs to replenish fat stores at migratory stopover sites on the Atlantic Coast.

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