The “blue crab” has become a problem in the Isole dello Stagnone Nature Reserve in Marsala, adding to the list of issues already plaguing the area such as decreasing water levels, poor circulation and oxygenation, human activity, and waste. Recently, a young girl was injured by one of the crab’s sharp claws while swimming in the sea, requiring eight stitches. There have also been reports of the crabs attacking birds seeking refuge in the water. The arrival of this species, Callinectes sapidus, from the Atlantic coast of South America to the quiet saltwater lagoon near the northern coast of Marsala is believed to be caused by climate change or possibly hiding in the cargo holds of large container ships. The blue crab has been proliferating in the Stagnone for the past two years and each female can produce up to two million eggs. It is known for its voracious appetite, particularly for fish eggs and clams. Some locals have begun catching and eating the crabs, as they are said to have a sweet flavor similar to lobster. However, the presence of the blue crab is considered an emergency for the Italian seas, and the government has allocated 2.9 million euros for its control. Various solutions are being considered, including creating a supply chain for the crabs, transforming them into animal feed, and consuming them in restaurants. Biological control methods are also being explored.
Il pericoloso granchio blu ha invaso lo Stagnone di Marsala: la lotta passa anche dalla pesca, viene usato per zuppe e sughi