Dozens of crawdads mysteriously show up in Albuquerque neighborhood

Photo of a crawdad. (Provided Photo/KRQE)

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) – It was a sight beyond strange. Dozens upon dozens of crawdads popped up on an Albuquerque neighborhood street Thursday morning, nowhere near a source of water. The reason why remains a mystery.

On Thursdays stormy morning, Albert Valdez left his home on Wilmoore Drive SE for early mass. When he returned, he found a bizarre scene at the end of his driveway.

“As I got out of my truck, there was a crawdad walking down middle of the street,” Valdez said.

That’s right — a crayfish strolling along the freshly wet road.

“As I walked around, I saw crawdads walking all over the street,” Valdez explained.

So, he grabbed a bucket. That’s when his granddaughter and his great-granddaughters came over to visit.

“Mom said, ‘Why don’t you call him over,’ and I said, ‘Grandpa!’ and he said, ‘Come here!’ and I went to him and then I looked in the bucket and it was full of crawdads,” explained 9-year-old Jade Torres.

The crawdads seemed to mainly stay in puddles, although the water dried up as the morning went on. Valdez picked them up, one by one but they kept appearing just as Valdez thought he had them all.

Jade and her sister — the brave young ladies — joined in with picking up the crawdads.

24-Hour News 8’s sister station, KRQE, even helped search for the creatures. So did neighbors, who came out after finding some in their backyards.

Oddly, the crayfish only seemed to be between Southern and Kathryn on Wilmoore.

When asked how many they thought they caught, Jade said, “Well, my grandpa said 150 and I think that’s about right. We got a lot of them.”

Several, unfortunately, did not make it after they were squished by cars. As for the lucky dozens that did, they later found a new home in a drainage ditch near Tingley Beach, where Valdez and his great-grand kids took the crawdads later Thursday morning.

“I really think they’re cute when you pick them up,” Jade said.

“You think they’re cute!?” KRQE asked.

“Yeah, I think they’re really cute with their big, black eyes.”

It was an adventurous, but certainly strange day to remember at grandpa’s.

“I don’t know, they might have fallen out of the sky,” Valdez said.

So where did the come from? How did they get there? It’s a mystery.

There are heavy, metal manholes on Wilmoore but otherwise no drains, ditches, ponds, lakes, arroyos or dams in the area.

KRQE called AMAFCA, ABCWUA as well as the City of Albuquerque and Game and Fish — all of which were puzzled by the discovery too.

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