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Thread: Biology and Conservation of Horseshoe Crabs

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    Default Biology and Conservation of Horseshoe Crabs

    Biology and Conservation of Horseshoe Crabs
    By John T. Tanacredi, Mark L. Botton, David Smith



    Pages:
    218
    Publisher: Springer
    Edition: 2009
    Language: English
    ISBN: 978-0387899588

    Description

    The four living species of horseshoe crabs face a set of growing threats to their survival, including the erosion and/or man-made alteration of essential spawning habitat, coastal pollution, and overfishing. Horseshoe crabs are “living fossils”, with a more than 200 million year evolutionary history. Their blood provides a reagent, known as Limulus amebocyte lysate or LAL, that clots in the presence of minute quantities of bacterial endotoxin; the LAL test is the state-of-the-art methodology used to ensure that pharmaceuticals and surgical implants are free of contamination. Horseshoe crabs are an integral part of the food web in coastal marine ecosystems, and their eggs provide essential food for shorebirds in the Delaware Bay estuary each spring. The commercial fishery for horseshoe crabs, which utilizes animals for bait, contributes to the economies of coastal communities.

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    Last edited by Motoko; 13th August 2012 at 03:40 PM. Reason: ADD INFO, IMAGE, DESCRIPTION. TEMPLATE.
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    Biology and Conservation of Horseshoe Crabs
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