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Alaskan King Crab

Alaskan King Crab

Alaskan king crab is very popular because of its white tender meat, which has a very delicate flavor. These are the most highly demanded seafood in the world. Sometimes the large Alaskan king crab may provide about 6 pounds of meat. There are three types of these species, which differs in their color. They are brown king crab (also known as golden king crab), blue crab and red crab. Among these three, the red crab is more popular for the taste of its meat. The meat of the red king crab turns to be dark red when cooked. The blue king crab is known for its huge claws and these species may sometimes grow up to 18 pounds. Before cooking, they are brown with deep blue highlights but after cooking, it turns to be orange-red so it might be served as a red crab. Lastly, the golden king crabs are smallest of these species and its meat is somewhat similar to the blue king crab.

Life Cycle
The females of the Alaskan crab produce thousands of embryos and they carry these embryos for an entire year under her tail. When the embryos hatch, they are able to swim in the water. But the high tide current may wash away these hatchlings with them. The hatchlings, which survive reach up to the bottom of the ocean and remain there until they get mature. These species have a characteristic of molting their shells throughout their life cycle. The males can mate many times but the females mate only once just after they go through the process of molting their shell.

The juvenile of these species feeds on animal plankton and tiny plants. And the adult of these species feed on sea urchins, worms, snails, clams, sand dollars, sponges, barnacles and algae. Moreover, the food of these species depends on their age, size as well as the depth of the water.

These species are the inhabitants of Alaska. The red king crabs are found in the Aleutians Islands, Southeast Alaska and Bristol Bay. The blue king crabs can be found in Saint Mathew and Pribilof Bay. The golden king crab can be found in Pribilof Bay, Aleutians Bay and Southeast Alaska.

The Alaskan king crab have been fished on the commercial level right from the mid-1950s. Over one million pound of these crabs was fished until 1965 and again it crossed around 94 million in years 1980 and 1981. Due to over fishing, environmental changes and the other predatory fish the population of these species decreased suddenly up to around 60%. The government has implemented a fishery management plan in 1989. However, the plan did not prove to be successful as the demand of these species is very high in the commercial market.