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NFC: Re: predator or scavenger?

Kristine Weisbrod Massin said:
> Are crawfish predators or scavengers?  All my biology books describe them
> exclusive scavengers but I've watched the ones in fish stores' feeder
> picking off fish as they swim past.  Is this simply desperation because
> don't have anything to eat, or a normal behavior?

Like many scavengers, crayfish are opportunistic.  They'll take what they
can get.

> I'd like to add a couple to the Visitor Center tank, but if they were to
> even think about eating any of the orangethroat darters, I'd have to boil
> 'em :)...I've gotten REALLY attached to those fish.

There are so many species of crayfish you could probably find one in your
locale that stays at such a small size it would pose little threat to your
piscine residents.  The larger species can and will capture fish, and
darters are at a disadvantage sharing the lowest layers of the tank with the

Chris Hedemark - Hillsborough, NC