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Hermit Crab

hermit crab

Common Names: Land Hermit Crab

Scientific Name: Coenobita clypeatus

Distribution: Florida, West Indies, South America

Size: Up to 4 inches in very large examples, usually smaller though.

Temperament: Usually good tempered but can pinch hard when handled.

Hardiness: Very hardy when properly set up and maintained.

Sexing: No dimorphisism, cannot be sexed when in shell.

"Captive Care"

Food: Commercial hermit crab chow, chicken scratch, corn meal, peanut butter, apples, pears, bananas, lettuce, other fruits and vegetables, toast, occasionally supplement in small amounts with a vitamin/calcium powder. Should be fed a small amount every other day for optimum health.

Housing: A 10 gallon aquarium with a screen top or a similarly sized enclosure is adequate for keeping a colony of crabs. Use a sand substrate. Landscape with various select pieces of driftwood, branches, cork bark, rocks and a variety of switching shells for the animals as they grow. For shop set ups and large colonies, create a back wall of siliconed rocks for climbing and place 1 inch of water on the bottom of tank, this will cause the crabs to stay on the rock wall and in full view. Feeding dishes can also be siliconed to the back wall. This set up is easily cleaned by rinsing and siphoning the bottom water. Small bird cages and custom wire enclosures also work well with these crabs.

Water: Should be provided with a shallow easily accessible water crock for drinking, soaking, and defecation.Clean as often as needed. Use only dechlorinated - dechloramined water at all times.

Temperature/Humidity: 65 F - 85 F room temperature. Humidity is provided by water section and occasional misting of enclosure.

Lighting: Full spectrum lighting/U.V. radiation is recommended not necessary for long term maintenance of Hermit Crabs, standard aquarium lighting is sufficient.

Heating: Under normal conditions supplementary heat is not required by Hermit Crabs.

Notes: For long term success with Hermit Crabs, care and attention must be given to the quality of the water (i.e., frequent changes and condition to remove chlorine and chloramine).


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