'They eat everything in their path': Spain's shellfish farmers turn on starfish


September 03, 2019

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Article by The Guardian/Photo: Ben James/Scottish Natural Heritage

Galicia, in north-west Spain, has declared war on an apparently inoffensive creature that is putting livelihoods under threat.

The region’s shellfish farmers say that an unusually large population of starfish has begun devouring their crop of mussels, cockles and clams. They recently obtained permission from the regional government to cull the starfish, and divers have been hauling up hundreds of kilos a day.

“They devour everything,” says Marco Antonio Ruibal, of the Raxó fishermen’s association in Pontevedra. “They are everywhere, in all the rías. They like shellfish, the same as the rest of us. Starfish principally feed on clams. They live on the seabed and when we dig up the clams, that’s when they eat them. 

To read more on this story go to The Guardian