Common Name: Rocky River Crayfish

Classification:  Nongame Fish - Crustacean




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National Range: North Carolina

NC Physiographic Region(s): Piedmont; limits of range unclear

River Basin(s): currently known from Upper Cape Fear and middle Yadkin-Pee Dee River basins; likely has wider range

Adult Habitat: unknown

Reproductive Season: late summer, fall

Species associates: Procambarus (O.) acutus and Cambarus (D.) latimanus in Cape Fear; P. acutus and C. (D.) reduncusin Yadkin-Pee Dee; other members of the C. (P.) acuminatus complex have been found at nearby sites in both river basins but not at the same site

Conservation status: not protected

Identification and Illustrations references: Cooper 2001

Taxonomic Description:

  • body shape: dorsoventrally flattened; thoracic section with punctations and granulations dorsally and cobbled tubercles laterally;cephalic section with tubercles
  • coloration:  variable but generally in shades of olive, green, blue-green, black and highlighted with tan, white, or orangeish tubercles (appears densely spotted) and ventrally; lateral surface of entire propodus of chelae bright orange, fading onto cheliped, tips of fingers orange, tan, or yellowish
  • spines: hepatic tubercles; branchiostegal tubercle or obsolete; single cervical spine or large spiniform tubercle; cephalic spine or tubercle
  • rostrum: long and acuminate, with strongly converging margins to acumen (acumen often "caret-shaped"); narrow overall; lacking median carina
  • areola: narrow and long
  • chelae: palm inflated; dorsal surface with squamous tubercles;costate distolateral and dorsolateral margins; mesial margin of palm with 2 rows of tubercles; strong to moderate dorsolongitudinal ridges on fingers; long plumose setae on opposable surface of fixed finger (adults and juveniles)
  • other characteristics: subtriangular outline of abdominal pleura; eyes large; suborbital angle subacute or obtuse
  • form I male gonopod: symmetrical; having a "disklike" caudal knob at base of central projection; central projection corneous, not tapered,and curved at about 90 degrees from shaft axis, with strong subapical notch; mesial process inflated, directed caudoproximally, and tapering to 2 miniscule "spines"

Notes:  separated from the species complex referred to as Cambarus (P.) sp. C (closely associated with C. (P.) acuminatus); required emending description of subgenus Puncticambarus to accomodate this species; because C. hobbsorum occurs in same range as other members of complex, it is hard to assign previous collections to the correct species without voucher specimens

Crayfish Regulations (PDF)

According to NC General Statue and NCWRC Regulation, it is unlawful to stock any fish (including shellfish and crustaceans) into public waters without a WRC permit.  It is also unlawful to transport, purchase, possess, or sell any live individuals of virile crayfish (Orconectes (Gremicambarus) virilis), rusty crayfish (Orconectes (Procericambarus) rusticus), Australian “red claw” crayfish (Cherax quadricarinatus) or other species of “giant” crayfish species.

The following illustration is reproduced from:
Cooper, J. E. 2001. Cambarus (Puncticambarus) hobbsorum, a new crayfish (Decapoda: Cambaridae) from North Carolina. Proceedings of the Biological Society of Washington 114(1): 152-161. 



 Fig 1.  Cambarus (Puncticambarus) hobbsorum, new species; all from holotypic male, form I (NCSM 5319), except E, F, from morphotypic male, form II (NCSM 5321), and K, from allotypic female (NCSM 5320): A, lateral aspect of carapace; B, C, mesial aspect of gonopod (first pleopod); C, F, lateral aspect of gonopod; D, dorsal aspect of carapace; G, caudal aspect of in situ gonopods; H, epistome; I, basis and ischium of third pereiopod, showing hook and opposing turbercle; J, lateral aspect of abdomen; K, annulus ventralis and postannular sclerite; L, antennal scale; M, dorsal aspect of distal podomeres of right cheliped. Setae not illustrated. Line = 2mm.
















        Credit NCWRC for all photos.