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What is a soft-shell crab?

It is not an individual species, as some believe. In order to grow, a crab (or lobster) must periodically shed its shell and grow a new, larger one. Immediately after undergoing this process (called "molting"), the crab has a soft exterior. It takes days, or longer, for the crab's exposed surface area to ossify. Until it does, the crab is highly vulnerable to predators (including two-legged diners) and is known as a soft-shell crab. The nonpareil soft-shell crab, from a seafood buff's perspective, is a young blue crab that has molted within the hour.

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06:10:43 on 07/11/07 by Webmaster - Questions and Answers -