White-clawed crayfish in Ballinderry river,  Republic of Ireland

White-clawed crayfish

White-clawed crayfish, Britain's only native freshwater crayfish, are under serious threat from an American invader. The introduced signal crayfish has had devastating effects, both out-competing the natives and carrying a deadly fungus against which the white-claw has no defence. Looking much like minature lobsters, they hide away under rocks and logs during the day, emerging at night to prey on larvae, snails and plants. Despite the threats, large populations can still be found in clean, well-oxygenated rivers and lakes across Europe.

Scientific name: Austropotamobius pallipes

Rank: Species

Common names:

  • Atlantic stream crayfish,
  • Freshwater white-clawed crayfish

Watch video clips from past programmes (2 clips)

In order to see this content you need to have an up-to-date version of Flash installed and Javascript turned on.


The White-clawed crayfish can be found in a number of locations including: Europe, United Kingdom, Wales. Find out more about these places and what else lives there.


The following habitats are found across the White-clawed crayfish distribution range. Find out more about these environments, what it takes to live there and what else inhabits them.

Additional data source: Animal Diversity Web


  1. Life
  2. Animals
  3. Arthropods
  4. Crabs, shrimp and krill
  5. Crabs, lobsters and shrimp
  6. Astacidae
  7. Austropotamobius
  8. White-clawed crayfish

BBC News about White-clawed crayfish