Rare all- blue crab donated to Sultana
CHESTERTOWN — An extremely rare, completely blue crab of the species Callinectes sapidus was donated to Sultana Education Foundation Oct. 1 by waterman Jamie White.
According to a news release from the Sultana Education Foundation, the crab was caught off of Rock Hall. Its color represents a genetic abnormality that can occur in crustaceans, the release states.
“I pulled it up and I thought it was spray painted,” White said.
White donated the all-blue crab to Sultana Education Foundation so that program participants can get a close look at the rare crustacean. Although all blue crabs have some amount of blue pigmentation on their shells, this example is most likely an extremely rare genetic mutation that has altered the amount of certain pigments in the shell.
Albino, orange and even purple crabs have been reported in the Chesapeake Bay in the past, as well as “mosaic” crabs, which are one color on part of their body, according to the release.
The all-blue crab, which is a 6-inch mature male, is currently residing in one of the brackish water fish tanks in Sultana Education Foundation’s Chestertown Holt Center wet lab. It appears in good health and seems unaware that is truly is a “once in a blue moon” crab, the release states.
To learn more about Sultana Education Foundation’s public or school programs, visit sultanaeducation.org.
While normal blue crabs have some blue coloration, as seen on the right, a rare crab with an all-blue shell, shown on the left, was donated to the Sultana Education Foundation this month