Radius: Making Connections for NH

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 as molting. The best time to process green crabs for consumption is before the molting begins. Data gathered by citizen scientists, like the green crab hunters in Rye Harbor, provides valuable information about when and where green crabs are the most abundant in their premolt phase. Currently, there is no established commercial market or fishery for these invaders. “The hope is that we can find enough information and data to streamline the fisheries process, recruit fishermen and get soft-shell green crabs into restaurants and markets more readily,” Bradt says. “Hopefully we’ll see some of our other species, like soft-shell clams, recover.” Bradt has worked extensively with partner organizations, volunteers, interns, industry members, local chefs and foodies to create opportunities to familiarize the public with


University of New Hampshire Cooperative Extension

green crabs as a delicious addition to the area’s cuisine. Green crabs are not as large as Dungeness or Jonah crabs, species commonly served in restaurants, but the rewards are worth the hard work required to harvest their delicate meat. They provide an excellent ingredient for a rich stock — the basis of Portsmouth chef Matt Louis’ green crab pozole — one of several recipes developed by local chefs and available on NH Sea Grant’s website. During Green Crab Week in July, several New Hampshire restaurants offered green crab specials on their nightly menus, including the Black Trumpet in Portsmouth and The Joinery in Newmarket. Generating excitement and demand for dishes like these will hopefully increase their popularity and drive market development. “Green crabs aren’t being utilized. They are edible and quite delicious,” Bradt explains. “By combining our research efforts with input from and outreach to different groups of stakeholders, we can mitigate the impact of invasive green crabs and boost economic value.”  r

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