Background – Habitat – FL Stone Crab


Stone crabs utilize a variety of habitats through their life cycle. Larvae are typically found in nearshore waters and within estuaries. Juvenile stone crabs typically inhabit shallower waters in areas where crevices are easily accessible for cover. Egg-bearing females typically inhabit grass flats in shallower water, while males are typically found further offshore until they move to shallow water to mate (Lindberg and Marshall 1984). Stone crabs also prefer salinities close to seawater, though adults and juveniles can tolerate salinities well above and below 35ppt (Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council (GMFMC) Stone Crab FMP). Lower salinities and temperatures may affect larval development (Lindberg and Marshall 1984). Adult stone crabs burrow under structures such as rock ledges, coralheads, dead shell, or may burrow into the substrate in seagrass beds or near tidal channels (GMFMC Stone Crab FMP).

Previous: Species Information                                                                                                   Next: Stock Status


Return to FL Stone Crab

Download the Audubon Gulf Seafood Guide mobile app:
Click here for the app tutorial on YouTube.
Sponsored and coordinated by Gulf States Marine Fisheries Commission.
Authorized by the five Gulf state marine resource management agencies.
NOAA Award #NA10NMF4770481.