The mitten crabs are coming?

August 10, 2008 11:15:18 AM PDT
Beware the mitten crabs. That's the warning from biologists concerned about the recent discoveries of Chinese mitten crabs along the East Coast, including New Jersey.

The crabs cause problems because they can destroy native species, erode shorelines by burrowing into sand and mud, and clog infrastructure in the water.

Officials say 20 of the crabs have been documented and confirmed. One was found in June in Toms River, and another a few weeks later in Raritan Bay.

The main shell of one of the Asian invaders is up to 4 inches wide and they have hairlike covering on their claws.

Curiously enough, the crabs' flesh is considered a delicacy in China.