December 13, 2009
These guys live on the rip-rap (rocks to prevent erosion) along my Grandma’s property. My Grandma lives on a brackish river leading into the Chesapeake Bay. They appeared about five years ago and have almost completely replaced the snail population. They cover the rocks but scurry away when you approach (impossible to catch). I also saw one swim a short distance. I’ve decided they are Trilobites back from extinction, but I suppose there could be a better explanation. Please help!
Thank you, Kriddie
Whitman, MD (eastern shore, Chesapeake Bay)
These are Marine Isopods commonly called Warf Roaches, Ligia exotica, an introduced species that has become common from New Jersey to Florida. You may read more about it on this website. A slightly smaller species, Ligia oceanica, is called a Sea Slater.