Saturday, February 4, 2012


I was looking into one of the creek pools when I noticed a crayfish slowly moving along the edge of a flat rock.  It’s not often that you see crayfish in the open sunlight, so I took a seat on the creek bank and waited to see what it was going to do.

My grandfather told me that crayfish were properly called crawdads, but when I noticed eggs beneath the tail section, I had to consider this individual to be a crawmom. 

Her foraging gradually brought her out into the open.  She seemed to be feeding on bits of material scraped from the rock.  It appears that her eggs have recently hatched.

Female crayfish carry their eggs among the swimmerets located beneath their tail.  After hatching, the young remain in place until they reach the point of development where they can survive on their own.

I didn’t want to prematurely dislodge the youngsters, so I didn’t pick her up.  When I left, she was still busily grazing the rocks.


  1. I spent my youth catchin' crawdads in our "crick" so I have a fondness for them. This is so cool - I've never seen pics of a crawmom with babes before.

  2. Hi Jain. As a kid, I used to impress everyone with my ability to use string and hotdog to catch crawdads.

  3. Great capture of the young crawdads still on crawmom! I, too, have fond memories of digging for crawdads (they made mud mounds) in our irrigation ditch with my brothers during long summer school breaks. There was a trick in how to hold them so they wouldn't pinch you. We tried to have crawdad fights, but that didn't work too well. Eventually, we boiled up a bucket full... they tasted like mud. Mom was not pleased with the mess we made in her sparkly kitchen.

  4. Hi Katie. I never witnessed any crawdad fights, but I learned early on that no matter how many crawdads you put into an aquarium, the number quickly reduced to one.