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Tagging Horseshoe Crabs in Jenkins Hall

 

A representative from SCDNR visited with Meghan Ward's Marine Biology classes in Jenkins Hall and brought several horseshoe crabs for the girls to study and tag.  Earlier in the year students had learned about horseshoe crabs during their estuaries study.  Today, horseshoe crab blood is used in the biomedical industry as the standard to test anything that is used intravenously.  For example, every vaccine that is given in the United States is tested with the blue, horseshoe crab blood for bacterial contamination.  Right now SCDNR is looking at the survival rate of the crabs after they have been bled.  Currently researchers take a percentage of the crab's blood and then release them back into the wild. By tagging the crabs they can monitor their survival rates.