E-Fauna BC: Electronic Atlas of the Wildlife of British Columbia

Hyas lyratus Dana, 1851
Pacific Lyre Crab
Family: Majidae

Species account author: Josephine Hart.
Extracted from Crabs and their relatives of British Columbia.
Photo of species

© Aaron Baldwin  Email the photographer   (Photo ID #4403)

E-Fauna BC Static Map
Distribution of Hyas lyratus in British Columbia
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Species Information

Carapace sub-lyrate in shape; fine granules over surface which is somewhat inflated medially and on branchial areas; elevations have rows of larger knobs. Carapace and appendages with numerous hooked setae dorsally. Rostrum flattened, bifid and horns separated by narrow fissure. Eyestalk with tubercle on anterior surface. Base of antenna with large rounded knob on distal part. Chelipeds of mature males stout and longer than walking legs; those of females and immature males, shorter. Walking legs slender and cylindrical, decreasing slightly in length posteriorly.


Carapace: male 105 x 80 mm, female 63 x 46 mm.


Carapace mud-brown with orange median stripe and white in grooves. Rostrum white and orange. Chelipeds white, brown and orange; fingers white with orange streaks; teeth and tips white. Walking legs white, orange and brown; claws tan. Antennules and antennae grey-brown with base of antennular flagella and antennal flagellum scarlet. Eyestalks brown and white; cornea yellowish with black slit.


Mud, sand and rocks. Often masked with encrusting algae and invertebrates.



Bering Sea to Puget Sound, Washington, 9 to 640 m.
Distribution In British Columbia

Widely distributed.


Hyas coarctatus aleutaceus Brand is found in the waters of Arctic Alaska but is easily distinguished from H. lyratus because of the distinctive knob on the base of the antenna of the latter.

Status Information

Origin StatusProvincial StatusBC List
(Red Blue List)
BC Ministry of Environment: BC Species and Ecosystems Explorer--the authoritative source for conservation information in British Columbia.

Additional Photo Sources

General References

Recommended citation: Author, Date. Page title. In Klinkenberg, Brian. (Editor) 2021. E-Fauna BC: Electronic Atlas of the Fauna of British Columbia [efauna.bc.ca]. Lab for Advanced Spatial Analysis, Department of Geography, University of British Columbia, Vancouver. [Accessed: 2024-02-25 1:50:17 AM]
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