University of Maine graduate student Tyler Van Kirk collects green crabs in Tenants Harbor. Credit: Courtesy of University of Maine

PORTSMOUTH, New Hampshire — A New Hampshire scientist has partnered with a Portsmouth restaurateur in an effort to reduce the numbers of an invasive crab species by convincing people to eat them.

Chef Matt Louis, owner of two restaurants in Portsmouth, unveiled a new menu item Tuesday that uses green crabs as a main ingredient. The Portsmouth Herald reports he teamed with University of New Hampshire scientist Gabby Bradt to help create the green crab stew with chicken sausage and chili oil.

Louis says the crabs have very hard shells, so he extracts flavor by cooking them whole to make stocks and stew.

Brandt says the crabs “decimate everything” and are badly hurting New England’s soft shell clam populations.

Brandt says local scientists are working on multiple solutions to the green crab problem.

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