KUSHIRO, Hokkaido (Kyodo) Municipal officials in Kushiro, Hokkaido, are trying to turn a foreign disaster into fortune by organizing an odd tour to lure more tourists to the town.

The tour is to catch, cook and eat signal crawfish, a North American crustacean.

The lobsterlike creature, known as “uchida-zarigani,” is considered harmful because it eats the precious “marimo” round green alga, which lives in Kushiro’s Lake Akanko, a popular tourist attraction.

The municipal government plans to organize a guided fishing tour at a dock in Kushiro in September. For the next fiscal year, the program will probably include eating the crayfish, the city officials said.

“If you get pinched by the claws, it can really hurt and may draw blood. But the taste is like that of a prawn and really good,” said Sueo Shirato, an official at the Kushiro office of the Environmental Ministry.

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