Susan Hoenig
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The Red Knot Rufa and the Horseshoe Crab
The Red Knot Rufa and the Horseshoe Crab

The Red Knot Rufa is one of the longest-distance migrants in the animal kingdom, from the Arctic to the southern tip of South America and back every spring. The Red knot stops in the Delaware Bay, a favorite stopover habitat where it eats the essential horseshoe crab eggs to replenish their fat supply to continue the journey. Red Knots are vulnerable to climate change affecting the arctic tundra ecosystem where they breed; coastal habitats due to rising sea levels; food resources and storm and weather patterns.

Horseshoe Crabs are an ancient species. Small species live on (and off) the horseshoe crab in a symbiotic relationship. As the crab ages it’s growth rate slows, it sheds less. The creatures help the molting process. Horseshoe Crabs are an important part of the ecology of coastal communities. Habitat degradation and pollution threatens their survival.ple.