Redclaw crayfish

Cherax quadricarinatus

Common name:

Redclaw crayfish

Scientific name:

Cherax quadricarinatus

Alternative common names:

Non at present.

This crayfish may attain a length of almost 40cm and weight of 2,5kg. It has a fan-like tail and large pincers. The colour is brown to dark grey and the pincers are steel blue with bright red patches, especially on the outer two sides. These crayfish are not indigenous to South Africa and may negatively impact indigenous freshwater species. It also carries parasites which have further impacts on indigenous species.

Additional Info

  • Where does this species come from?

    Australia.

    What is its invasive status in South Africa?

    NEMBA Category 1b.

    Where in South Africa is it a problem?

    Known from the Sand River Dam on a tributary of the Crocodile River in Mpumalanga Province, as well as in Swaziland.

    How does it spread?

    Through dispersal in aquatic environments.

    Why is it a problem?

    These crayfish are not indigenous to South Africa and may negatively impact indigenous freshwater species. It also carries parasites which have further impacts on indigenous species.

    What does it look like?

    Description: This crayfish may attain a length of almost 40cm and weight of 2,5kg. It has a fan-like tail and large pincers. The colour is brown to dark grey and the pincers are steel blue with bright red patches, especially on the outer two sides. Habitat: Freshwater rivers, dams and irrigation canals. Breeding: Females deposit eggs which are attached to abdominal appendages called pleopods, where they undergo preliminary development.