Cancer bellianus

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Cancer bellianus
Cancer bellianus Johnston 1861 stuffed museum La Rochelle.jpg
Scientific classification edit
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Subphylum: Crustacea
Class: Malacostraca
Order: Decapoda
Infraorder: Brachyura
Family: Cancridae
Genus: Cancer
C. bellianus
Binomial name
Cancer bellianus
Johnson, 1861[1]

Cancer bellianus, the toothed rock crab, is a common species of crab in the north-eastern Atlantic Ocean.


It grows up to 130 millimetres (5.1 in) in carapace length, and is pale brown with red spots.[2]

Distribution and ecology[edit]

Its geographical range extends from near Höfn on the south coast of Iceland (at nearly 64° N) south to Morocco, including the Azores, Madeira and the Canary Islands.[3] It is found at depths from 50 metres (160 ft) to over 730 m (2,400 ft).[4] While the species is sometimes abundant in the south of its range, it is uncommon further north; all the specimens from Brittany and further north were male, and are thought to be recent travellers from further south, rather than representing a stable northern population.[5]


C. bellianus is caught as bycatch by artisan fishermen targeting Palinurus elephas, and as much as 10 t can be caught annually.[3]


  1. ^ Charles Fransen (June 12, 2007). "Cancer bellianus Johnson, 1861". European Register of Marine Species. Retrieved January 23, 2009.
  2. ^ M.J. de Kluijver; S.S. Ingalsuo. "Cancer bellianus". Macrobenthos of the North Sea: Crustacea. Universiteit van Amsterdam. Archived from the original on June 8, 2011. Retrieved January 23, 2009.
  3. ^ a b Pinho, M. R.; J. M. Gonçalves & H. R. Martins (2001). "Biology and abundance of Cancer bellianus (Decapoda, Brachyura) around the Azores". ICES Journal of Marine Science. 58 (4): 896–903. doi:10.1006/jmsc.2001.1079.
  4. ^ J. A. Quiles; V. Rico; V. M. Tuset; J. I. Santana; J. A. González (2001). "Notes on the biology of Cancer bellianus (Brachyura, Cancridae) around the Canary Islands". Hydrobiologia. 449 (1–3): 193–199. doi:10.1023/A:1017546615270.
  5. ^ James Mason; C. Davidson (1965). "Cancer bellianus Johnson in Northern Atlantic waters (Decapod Brachyura)". Crustaceana. 10 (3): 318–320. doi:10.1163/156854066X00261. JSTOR 20102755.