Scientists on the lookout for invasive European green crabs in Washington

PORT TOWNSEND, Wash. -- Scientists are asking for the public's help to monitor shorelines for an invasive species of crab.

The Peninsula Daily News reports that Washington Sea Grant is organizing the effort to search for European green crabs, an invasive species that has been blamed for the collapse of the soft-shell clam industry in parts of Maine.

Some are concerned that it might have a similar impact on native and commercial species in Puget Sound.

The group, says no crabs have been found in the Sound or Strait of Juan de Fuca, but it's important to keep on the lookout.

The project is in its second year.

Scientists were alarmed when the first known green crab colony in the Salish Sea was discovered near Victoria, across the Strait on Vancouver Island.