Thousands of crabs and lobsters have been washing up along the Tees estuary and neighboring northeast shores in England. The continued deaths are raising alarms for locals and experts.

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The first sightings were reported in early October. Since then, dead lobsters and crabs have continued washing up on the shore, especially in Marske and Saltburn. The first incidents were reported near Seaton Carew, Redcar and Seaham.

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The deaths have attracted the attention of lawmakers, who are now asking questions. Jacob Young, Conservative MP for Redcar, has raised the matter with ministers, demanding answers over the deaths. In a statement, Young said it’s “deeply worrying that this seems to be continuing on our coastline.”

Some people, such as former Redcar MP Anna Turley, have even termed the situation apocalyptic. Turley joins thousands of residents worried by the situation. According to Marske locals, last week’s beach scene was the worst so far. Both dead and living crabs were spotted on the shores, with some already decaying.

Although experts have yet to establish the exact cause of the deaths, environmental groups are concerned about the ecosystem. Environmentalists have observed that the local fishing industry has experienced a 95% drop in lobster and crab catches. The Environmental Agency EA is currently working with the Centre for Environment, Fisheries and Aquaculture Science (CEFAS) to find the reason behind the deaths. While speaking to the press, a spokesperson said that samples have been collected for analysis and that answers will be provided soon.

“Samples of water, sediment, mussel and crab have been collected and are being sent to our labs for analysis to consider whether a pollution incident could have contributed to the deaths of the animals,” a spokesperson said. “We have also shared samples with CEFAS labs for disease analysis.”

Via The Guardian

Lead image via Pexels