Gigantic black ‘crayfish’ spotted in Stockport park leaving locals terrified

A crayfish spotted in Woodbank Park, Stockport, has left residents horrified by its menacing claws.

On a post on Facebook, Jamie Wardle posted a photo of the creature, saying it was around four to six inches in length, and had been discovered by his dog.

Several residents initially thought the claw-bearing cephalopod was a scorpion — but Leon McCreery pointed out that it was in fact a crayfish.

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Leon has past encounters with the animals, as his dog, Smudge, has developed a talent for finding them.

“I s*** myself,” Leon told the Manchester Evening News when asked how he reacted to first seeing one.

It’s thought the crayfish pictured is the native species to the UK, which is endangered
(Image: UGC)

“[Smudge] is an ancient breed from Spain and they are used to herd cattle and on farms,” the 39-year-old continued, “I just saw him trying to herd something. I went over to him and thought it was a scorpion.

“I s*** myself. Then I saw I did not see a stinger tail. I was just watching it and another woman saw it and s*** herself.

“Someone else said it was a crayfish and put it back in the pond.”

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Leon and Smudge’s encounter took place in December last year, but the stay-at-home dad says he’s spotted the creatures several times since then.

These meetings have sparked Leon’s appreciation for the wider biodiversity to be found in Woodbank Park, in Offerton.

“There’s a lot up there,” he added, “you see all the squirrels and the birds.”

“You do not know about it until you come across it — then you start looking up more about it.”

It’s thought the crayfish spotted by Leon and Jamie are native white-clawed crayfish — a species under threat from signal crayfish, which are native to America.

The crayfish spooked Leon, some onlookers, and dog Smudge
(Image: UGC)

According to the Inland Waterways Association, numbers of European white clawed crayfish have declined by 50-80 percent in the last ten years.

It is classified as ‘endangered’ on the IUCN red list of threatened species and is at risk of global extinction.

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