AZGFD was proud to partner with Audubon Arizona, and Boy Scout Troop #398. With their help, 25 participants captured 89 red swamp crayfish from the Audubon’s wetland pond in about two hours of trapping. The scouts worked in teams to set and pull traps, as well as measure and identify crayfish gender for data collection.
The removal of these crayfish will help reduce pressure on the pond’s endangered native fish — Gila topminnow and desert pupfish. Arizona has no native crayfish and these introduced crustaceans have become invasive species. With a state fishing license you can catch unlimited numbers of crayfish every day of the year!
Scout troop #398 also donated to the Department a new crayfish resource box, which has a dozen umbrella traps, several small buckets, clipboards, data sheets, measuring rulers, dip nets, and hook poles. Each AZGFD office has a couple crayfish resource boxes available to loan out to scout troops, home-schooled families, science educators, angler groups, and volunteers to catch crayfish on their own. These resources allow folks to participate in “citizen science” and provide the Department some data on crayfish trapping efforts around the state.