Is a Wigan pond infested with colossal crustaceans?
That was the question on locals’ lips today after it was claimed that a massive crayfish had been recovered from the lake at Ince’s Walmsley Park - just yards from where children play.
Humans will rarely see crayfish during the day but if you shine a flashlight in the water at dark its a whole different storycrayfishfacts.org
An image was posted to Facebook of the mudbug, claiming it had weighed in at 21lbs.
But many who have seen the picture are saying it is just far too big to be anything but a hoax.
The image was posted on Facebook by John Mailey whom the Wigan Evening Post attempted to contact but to no avail by the time the paper went to press.
Naturally, the post sparked a debate about whether it was genuine or fake.
Some backed up its authenticity saying that there are a number of the creatures in the pond.
While the pond has long been known as a happy hunting ground for the lobster-like creatures this one dwarfs any of the regular inhabitants.
The signal crayfish has gained a reputation similar to that of the grey squirrel in that it was introduced into British waters to supplement small stocks of native species only to be so resilient and resourceful that they have become by far the dominant species.
Usually they grow to between nine and 18ins in length.
According to crayfishfacts.org: “Crayfish are small crustaceans that live in freshwater water habitats in which do not freeze over in cold conditions.
“Depending on where you are location wise, the crayfish is also referred to as a crawdad or crawfish.
“The physical appearance of the crayfish looks like a smaller version of a lobster. It has the same conjoined like body structure and they both come from similar family genes.
“Their body structure is made up of one interconnected piece of head and midsection. Their eyes have the ability to wander around and see a large spectrum of vision. Their outside shell is a mix between yellow and brown with a hint of green at times.
“Rivers and brooks are the main living habitat for the crayfish due to their water clarity and thin ice conditions.
“Humans will rarely see crayfish during the day but if you shine a flashlight in the water at dark its a whole different story. These guys do their travelling and feeding during the darkest hours of the night. You will see them walking ever so slow to their destinations but when danger arises, the flap their strong tail and they are gone in the blink of an eye.”