Monday, October 6, 2008

Monster Crayfish!

I watched the lone Pied-billed Grebe hanging out with a few Canada Geese at Goose Lake. From what I could tell by the shoreline, the Grebe had what I thought was a large bluegill. He was struggling with it's size, and kept dropping it, and then diving to catch it again... I took a few shots, but the distance and lighting angle were not favorable, so I moved on.



I had no idea until I processed the frames that the meal he was trying so hard to hold on to, was a giant Crayfish. Had I known that the lil Grebe had quite the prize, I would have stuck it out and seen how he managed to eat this thing or give up.



Looking at this thing on the computer screen made me want to conduct a semi-scientific experiment to determine the size of the crayfish. The information I had was a general reference to Pied-billed Grebes length being around 15 inches, so...I measured the grebe on screen and sized it to 15 inches using a real ruler. Then, I measured the crayfish and found it to be around 9 inches without factoring in the claws. That's a meaty crayfish or should I say lobster!

It was also curious that this crayfish was even in this lake which is quite small. A little over a month ago, the entire lake was dried up, so how this thing survived is a bit of a mystery...and amazing!

6 comments:

Shellmo said...

Very neat! It looks to big for him to swallow - great pics!

Dr Zibbs said...

You should leave some melted butter on the shoreline then see if he comes in to dip the crawfish in. When he does..snap. You've got a perfect shot.

The Birdlady said...

Good grief! He had his hands (er..bill)full!

Ecobirder said...

Nice pics. I photographed a green heron that caught a similar crayfish back in August. He finally gave up and let the crayfish go because it was too big for it to eat.

Todd Dixon said...

Holy Heimlich, Batman! That is one big crustacean!

Bird Girl said...

I should say...that is one heck-of-a crayfish! Very cool capture!