Lithodid crabs (and other skeleton-crushing predators) may have been excluded from cold Antarctic continental shelf waters for more than 14 million years. The west Antarctic Peninsula shelf is warming rapidly and has been hypothesized to be soon invaded by lithodids. A remotely operated vehicle survey in Palmer Deep, a basin 120 km onto the Antarctic shelf, revealed a large, reproductive population of lithodids, providing the first evidence that king crabs have crossed the Antarctic shelf.
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