Crayfishes of Alabama

Guenter A. Schuster, Christopher Alan Taylor, Stuart W. Mcgregor

Research output: Book/Report/Conference proceedingBook


This book represents the most in-depth treatment of crayfishes for the state of Alabama to date. Alabama is currently known to host 99 species of crayfishes. The findings in this book are based on more than 9,000 records gathered from across the entire state. The authors collected specimens and data from all of Alabama's major and minor waterways and lakes, as well as specialized habitats such as burrows, roadside ditches, marshes, swamps, and temporary autumnal ponds. They visited all the major museums with holdings of crayfish specimens from Alabama, yielding a list of historical records including 4,259 specimen lots from approximately 2,200 unique locations. These records were used to build a database containing all available specimen metadata, including, but not limited to: species identification, number of individuals collected, location, date of collection, names of collectors, who identified the specimens, and the museum in which they are stored. Field work was conducted over a 14-year period during which a total of 4,487 specimen lots were collected and added to the database from approximately 2,600 unique locations sampled across Alabama. Prior to this book, no single comprehensive book or reference has ever been published on the crayfishes of Alabama. This book compiles 166 years of crayfish distributional and biological data for the 99 known Alabama species. It begins with chapters on the physiography and waterways of Alabama. One chapter discusses the general distributional patterns and habitat associations of Alabama crayfishes. Subsequent chapters discuss crayfish biology, ecology, conservation, and anatomy. Detailed species accounts include descriptions of morphological characters, life color, maximum size, comparative species, distribution and habitat, biology, crayfish associates, and conservation status. Color photographs, morphological plates, and dot maps showing distributions are included for each species; for many species, multiple color photos demonstrate the known color variations within each species. An illustrated key is provided to guide the identification of all 99 species. As the most up-to-date and comprehensive source of information on Alabama crayfishes to date, "Crayfishes of Alabama" provides a new perspective on Alabama's unique place as a biodiversity hotspot. It will be of lasting value to aquatic biologists and ecologists throughout the Southeast and crayfish biologists around the world, as well as of interest to natural resource managers, aquaculture farmers, and naturalists
Original languageEnglish (US)
PublisherThe University of Alabama Press
Number of pages5020
ISBN (Electronic)9780817393762
ISBN (Print)9780817321062
StatePublished - 2022


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