Millions of red crabs descended on roads and bridges on Australia’s Christmas Island as part of their annual ocean migration, closing certain roads.
The small island in northwest Australia sees the migration of all species of crabs every year, which is estimated at 50 million, the highest in the world.
The mesmerizing view of crabs taking over vast swathes of roads and parks attracts the attention of residents and visitors rushing back to take pictures and videos of the migration.
The cannibal lobster begins its journey at the same time from the forest after the rains in October and November and marches toward the ocean near the National Park for mating and breeding.
They also move over residential areas to continue their long journey to breed in time in what is considered one of the largest migrations on the planet.
In photos and videos shared by Parks Australia, the organization that manages the country’s six national parks and other marine and botanical gardens, red crabs can be seen at the office door.
“With the red crab migration in full swing on Christmas Island, crabs are popping up everywhere, including at the office building door! Our staff has been managing traffic, getting crabs out of roads and providing updates to the community on road closures.”
Authorities spend weeks preparing for this migration as roads are blocked and visitors are asked to park their cars carefully.
Male crabs lead the way and reach the ocean shore first, followed by female crabs and then mate in or near burrows. Female crabs can produce up to one hundred thousand eggs during this mating season which they keep for the next two weeks.
While the timing of migration depends on precipitation and the timing of the moon, super-intelligent creatures always know when it’s time to leave.
This year, they are expected to reach the coast by the end of this month.