That’s Not My Horseshoe!
Every May and June when it’s a full moon, creatures from the ocean climb out of the waters and on to the beach to find a mate. Who are these creatures? Why it is the horseshoe crab campers! It’s the full moon in June, so we thought we might learn more about them!
- Horseshoe crabs are found along the coast of the U.S. and along the Gulf coast.
- They are carnivores. They eat worms, algae and mollusks.
- Horseshoe crabs are listed as Near Threatened by the IUCN.
- Horseshoe crabs and their relatives have been around for 450 million years ago .
- They are not true crabs. They are related to spiders.
- Horseshoe crabs have hard carapaces that cover their bodies.
- Horseshoe crabs have six pair of legs.
- They have one long tail to help right themselves if they are flipped upside down.
- Those eyes are extremely sensitive to light. They have the largest rods and cones of any animal on the planet.
- Their mouths are located in the middle of their legs on the underside.
Horseshoe crabs have blue blood that is full of copper. Their blood is used to help with medical issues with human medical research. Who knew that these ocean dwellers were living fossils?