Tuesday 10 February 2015

Freddie's Crab Facts

Freddie often has lots of interesting nuggets of information to share about dinosaurs. On the gate one morning he told Mr Drakes about horse shoe crabs and how they had managed to survive the mass extinction of the dinosaurs. Mr Drakes challenged him to find out how this happened... and Freddie delivered!

  1. Horse shoe crabs are able to survive in water that is anything from slightly salty to extremely salty.
  2. After the mass extinction the oxygen levels in the water dropped - killing many species of marine life. However the crabs can survive in very low levels of oxygen.
  3. Horse shoe crabs have a special blood which is incredibly effective at killing off harmful bacteria. In fact Horseshoe crab amebocytes coagulate around as little as one part in a trillion of bacterial contamination. Even better, the reaction takes 45 minutes, not two days as with mammalian equivalents. Coagulan, the chemical that makes this possible, is used for testing medical equipment and vaccines prior to use, without which many more people would die from infections.
Freddie you really went above and beyond with this information... well done!

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