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WANTED: Maryland Officials Want You To Kill Invasive Mitten Crabs

ANNAPOLIS, Md. (WJZ) -- Snakeheads are invasive, two species of catfish and now our beloved crabs --- have an invasive species local environmentalist want your help remove from Maryland waterways.

RELATED: Maryland DNR Asking Fishermen To Catch And Kill Invasive Catfish

According to the Smithsonian Environmental Research Center, Chinese mitten crabs are an invasive species of crab that could affect the state's crab population.

The key identifier of a mitten crab is it's "furry" claws, according to the Anne Arundel County Department of Public Works. They have light brown to olive-colored bodies and they have an I-shaped notch between their eyes.

Mitten Crabs (Courtesy Smithsonian Environmental Research Center)
Mitten Crabs (Courtesy Smithsonian Environmental Research Center)

If you catch a mitten crab, SERC wants you to take the following steps:

  • Do not throw it back alive!
  • Take a close-up photo.
  • Note the precise location where the animal was found.
  • Freeze the animal, keep on ice, or as a last resort preserve it in rubbing alcohol.
  • Please report a mitten crab by submitting information and photos here or email to We will reply to each report and may also ask about any specimens that you may have collected.
  • For other questions, you can also contact the Mitten Crab Hotline at 443-482-2222.
Crab Dead
Courtesy the Anne Arundel County Department of Public Works

For more information on Chinese mitten crabs or to reporting a sighting, go to

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