It’s taking them longer to go from oyster spat to oyster adult,” said Luke Dodd, a doc­toral can­di­date at UNC who put the crabs in a tank with oys­ters. “When you’re a baby, there’s tons of preda­tors that want to eat you up.”

But when they put mud crabs and oys­ters together in the tanks pol­luted with carbon, Dodd, Michael F. Piehler of UNC and Jonathan Grabowski of North­eastern Uni­ver­sity observed some­thing they didn’t expect, a response that gave oys­ters a prayer.

Under con­di­tions with lower levels of carbon, two mud crabs pol­ished off 20 oys­ters in six hours. But in the aquar­iums with higher levels of carbon, the mud crabs seemed confused.

Read the article at The Washington Post →