Kodiak, Alaska (KINY) A study on releasing hatchery raised crabs into the wild is coming to an end.
The study is designed to determine whether or not hatchery raised king crab can add to the population in the wild. The Alaska King Crab Research, Rehabilitation and Biology Program has been working on the study for eight years. Experts said the king crab populations have declined throughout Alaska.
So far they've been able to produce 15,000 juvenile crab and put them into the wild. While they are not expected to survive the conditions, it does give researchers an opportunity analyze their behavior and interactions and determine the percentage that survive.
Alaska legislators are considering whether to use hatcheries to enhance the wild king crab population so that some areas could be opened for crab. Commercial harvest of crab is likely years away.