There are killer sharks and killer Goliath tiger fish among others but who’d think of killer shrimps? In every species there are always murderous members and maybe it’s a part of the evolutionary process.
These aggressive species are just about one inch long. They are not natives of the Great lakes. They are from Eastern Europe. The same species is now causing headaches in Western European waterways, according to researchers at McGill University. These voracious eaters could be a source of threat for the Great Lakes in the near future, maybe even before 2063, they added.
They are known by their scientific name Dikerogammarus villosus, and experts have a moniker for them: killer shrimp. They have extra-long mandibles and as a predator they will attack and kill even when they are not hungry.
“Consequently, in 50 years, the Great Lakes would be populated with many new invaders, most of which may come from inland waterways where Europe and Asia meet—the region around the Black Sea,” stated a press release from the university. “This region is the source of some of the most disruptive invaders in the Great Lakes today, such as the zebra mussel, and still has many species at a high risk of invading the North American lakes and rivers, such as the killer shrimp or the monkey goby.”
The future of this highly invasive water creatures will depend on what laws that will deal with them. They will definitely enter the North American waterways. At present there are over 180 foreign aqueous residents living in the Great Lake which started 200 years ago. But latest technologies have reduced the possibility of more foreign species in getting access to the lake. According to researchers additional policies would be required to strengthen the present laws which include regulating live animal trade in order to safeguard the lake.
“No new species have been recorded since 2006,” said Katie Pagnucco, PhD student at McGill and lead author of the study. “We may have closed the door on ballast water-mediated invasions. That remains to be seen. But other doors are still open.”
The killer shrimps were described best by DNR spokesman Nick Popoff.
“They have a really big mouth and claws, and they literally shred their prey,” DNR spokesman Nick Popoff told the Detroit Free Press. “They are very aggressive in any of the systems that they get into.”