Humongous Asian shrimp invading US waters, say scientists

Giant tiger shrimp may spell trouble for native shrimp species, scientists worry.

By , Associated Press

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    This images shows shrimp monger Scott Jones at Billy's Seafood in Bon Seceur, Ala. Scientists have expressed concern that tiger shrimp are invading U.S. waters.
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An increase in reports of big Asian tiger shrimp in the Gulf of Mexico and along the U.S. Southeast coast has federal biologists worried.

The black-and-white-striped shrimp can grow 13 inches long and weigh a quarter-pound, compared to eight inches and a bit over an ounce for domestic white, brown and pink shrimp.Scientists fear the tigers will bring disease and competition for native species.

From 2008-2010, a few dozen tiger shrimp a year were reported in U.S. waters. Last year, 210 were reported from North Carolina to Texas. Scientists believe the population is much higher and shrimpers simply aren't reporting them.

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The government's asking people to report and bring back tiger shrimp so scientists can learn whether it's the vanguard of an invasion.

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