I'm a student going into 3rd year and have started preparing for my dissertation. My current title is "Why Have Attempts to Control Signal Crayfish in the UK Failed?"
I am looking to conduct interviews with various stakeholders regarding the current situation, assessing the reasons for the failure of all methods of control. I will also look into possible solutions to the problem, linking my research topic with Hugh's fish fight.
There is a market in the UK for crayfish, simply look at restaurant menus across the country, as well as the sale of crayfish in supermarkets, for example M&S, and companies such as Pret a Mange. As an alternative 'fish' product, I believe there is potential to create a UK market, and create a cost-effective method of depleting Signal crayfish numbers nationally. I realise crayfish plague is a huge concern for the native crayfish population, and taking larger Signal specimens from UK waters allows the smaller Signal population to boost. However, if appropriate education was put in place to distinguish between species and how to deal with caught crayfish and contain plague spores, and if enough demand (which is there), enough funding and community support was given, this national biodiversity threat could be seriously diminished.
I aim to get an interview with Hugh as I feel it would benefit my project hugely, however I am finding it very difficult to contact him as the 'contact us' page has no option for this type of enquiry. I hope someone sees this, Hugh in particular! If anyone has any comments or questions regarding my project, I would appreciate it.