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Now CRABS swarm the beaches: THOUSANDS of spider crabs appear on Cornish coast

Now CRABS are swarming the beaches: THOUSANDS of spider crabs appear on the Cornish coast – days after a shark attack

  • Crowds of spider crabs hit popular tourist beach during the height of the summer season
  • Their presence at Porthgwidden Beach was enough to deter many swimmers
  • But some swimmers did take the opportunity to snorkel above the crab carpet

Thousands of spider crabs have inundated the beaches during the height of the summer season in Cornwall.

A large number of them gathered in the shallows at St Ives in Cornwall to shed their shells before returning to the depths of the sea.

While their presence at Porthgwidden Beach was enough to deter many swimmers from entering the sea, some took the opportunity to snorkel above the carpet of crabs.

Instantly recognizable by their long legs and pincer claws, spider crabs have a venomous bite that is poisonous to their prey, but harmless to humans.

A large number of them gathered in the shallows at St Ives in Cornwall to shed their shells before returning to the deep

A large number of them gathered in the shallows at St Ives in Cornwall to shed their shells before returning to the deep

While it’s not uncommon to see them in British waters, mass gatherings like this are becoming more common in the summer due to rising sea temperatures.

Once the crabs regain a tough outer shell, they will spread to a depth of 300 feet and paddling will become much more appealing.

Kate Lowe, a marine photographer, captured the event the same week a female snorkeler was bitten by a blue shark further off the coast of Cornwall, off Penzance.

Kate said: ‘I usually go snorkelling all year round, but I’ve never seen such a large amount of spider crabs.

While it's not uncommon to see them in UK waters, mass gatherings like this are becoming more common in the summer due to rising sea temperatures

While it’s not uncommon to see them in UK waters, mass gatherings like this are becoming more common in the summer due to rising sea temperatures

“When we got to the beach, it looked like there were a lot of dark rocks below the surface.

“But it turned out there were thousands of crabs that were only two or three steps into the water.

“It was just unbelievable, they were only knee deep. I could float on the water above them and try not to step on them.

“Many tourists screamed at the sight of them.

“Their shed shells just floated around.”

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