Williams' Crayfish

Orconectes williamsi
Cambaridae (freshwater crayfish) in the order Decapoda (shrimp, crabs, and lobsters)

This is a small, rather plain crayfish without bright colors or bold markings. Its most distinctive feature is a pale, vase-shaped zone along the middle of the dark olive-tan carapace. The pincers are broad and powerful. Similar species within the range of Williams' crayfish are the Ozark crayfish (Orconectes ozarkae), which has numerous dark specks on the pincers and abdomen, and the ringed crayfish (O. neglectus), which has prominent black or brown rings near the tips of the fingers. These species reach a larger size than Williams' crayfish.

Adult length: about 1 1/4 to 2 inches.
Habitat and conservation: 
Inhabits clear, rocky and gravelly headwater creeks, spring branches and cave streams. It excavates burrows beneath large rocks in gravelly and sandy substrates.
Distribution in Missouri: 
Williams' crayfish occurs in the White River basin of Missouri and Arkansas and has been recorded in Roaring River and a few other streams of southern Barry, Stone, Christian and Taney counties.
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