The Semester I Got Crabs

Shannon is a student who participated in my blogging workshop as part of her Science and Nature Writing class earlier this semester. He she recounts her experience conducting independent research at the Duke University Marine Lab.


This past semester I was simply enjoying my life and doing what college students do when it happened: I got crabs. Sixty-four of them, to be exact. Never before had I experienced such prolonged irritation; before long I was just itching to get rid of them. For weeks I was sure that I had made a foolish mistake, vowing to be more careful in the future. Now, I’m not talking about Pthirus pubis, the sexually transmitted disease—get your mind out of the gutter! The crabs I’m referring to are Clibanarius vitattus, the striped hermit crabs that haunted my dreams and terrorized my every waking moment for the duration of my first ever independent study experiment.

Read More