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FAQs on Terrestrial/Freshwater Hermit Crabs Compatibility

Related Articles: Terrestrial Hermit Crabs, Freshwater CrustaceansInvertebrates for Freshwater Aquariums by Neale Monks,

Related FAQs:  Terrestrial Hermit Crabs 1, Terrestrial Hermit Crabs 2, & FAQs on Terrestrial Hermits: Terr. Hermit ID, Terr. Hermit Behavior, Terr. Hermit Selection, Terr. Hermit Systems, Terr. Hermit Feeding, Terr. Hermit Disease, Terr. Hermit Reproduction. & FAQs on Marine/SW: SW Hermit ID, SW Hermit Behavior, SW Hermit Compatibility, SW Hermit Selection, SW Hermit Systems, SW Hermit Feeding, SW Hermit Disease/HealthSW Hermit Reproduction, & FW Crustaceans 1FW Crustaceans 2


Hermit crabs... rdg.     6/18/12
Hello there my family recently took a trip to North Carolina and on a crabbing trip my son caught a hermit crab.  Being a 6 year old little boy he wanted to take it home for a pet. Me being me I said ok but now have a few questions, actually a lot, as to habitat and if the wild crab will do well with store bought crabs.  My daughter got jealous and now I am the proud owner of a few of the fun little creatures. I didn't know if the wild crab would attack the tame ones
<They'll all eat each other given hunger, opportunity>

 and if I had to have a different habitat for the water dwelling crab versus the land dwelling store bought ones any help would be greatly appreciated thank you in advance.
<... read here: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/FWSubWebIndex/terrhermitself.htm
and the linked files above for both terr. and marine hermits. Bob Fenner>

Land Hermit Questions - 07/13/2004 I've recently become a land hermit crab enthusiast, <Rock on, me too!> and I hope you can help.   <Delighted to try.> I bought 3 hermits from a mall kiosk about 4 months ago.  I'm looking to get some more, as I would like to have a small clan of them.  Can different species of land hermit crabs cohabitate?   <Yes, provided they are given appropriate care.  I don't know how much you know about these guys, so I'm going to add some extra information, just in case:  The most important thing with these boogers is humidity; temperature is also of great import.  Be sure the animals are in a decent sized habitat (a 10 gallon or larger enclosure) with a well fitting lid to keep in humidity.  You can get humidity and temperature gauges at a local pet shop to enable you to know whether they are in acceptable limits for your little land crabbers.  It is also very important to offer them a dish of fresh water AND a dish of saltwater.  You can use salt intended for marine fish tanks, and mix up a gallon at a time in a jug to use when you need.  This is *especially* important for Coenobita compressus, the 'Ecuadorian' hermit, but also good (possibly necessary) for other species, as well.  Another important thing to think about is molting....  too much on that to offer in a short email, so I'll just give you some info links at the bottom of this.> If so, where can I go to purchase different species? <Well....  What species do you have now?  And what species do you want?  Are there particular traits you're looking for (Size, activity level, color, etc.)?  How big is your crab tank?  My personal favorite are C. compressus, for their high activity level and fun digging habits.  As to where to find some "oddball" species, look here:  http://www.hermits-direct.net/ .  And now, for some info links, as promised: http://www.landhermitcrabs.com http://www.landhermitcrabs.com/caresheet.html http://www.hermitcrabassociation.com/care.html There are forums located on both of those 'sites, as well - enjoy!  Wishing you and your hermits well,  -Sabrina>

Who killed my hermit crabs I have had two medium size dark red legged hermit crabs for a year. I purchased them from a Coach House. I bought all the necessities; the large wire cage so they could climb around, a water bowl (resembling a rock), a sponge, hermit crab food, a little wood, two empty shells. The works for what I would figure as a good life for a crab. One seemed a little more assertive than the other, but they live comfortably together. This year I was back in the same town that I had purchased the two pervious crabs from so I decided to purchase two more since they have done so well. This time they were only slightly larger then the previous two. The two from previous never shed and never changed shells.  <actually... they likely shed but ate their molt (common with crabs)> The two I just bought, just as before one seemed a little more assertive than the other. The shy one however, once he does come out of his shell, which is not very often is a bit of a beast. He scares me. I have had them all in the same cage with all the same life styles as before - large wire cage, water bowl, etc... I have had them together for two weeks and all had seemed to being going well until one day .... I came home from work and found one had been murdered, torn to bits; a leg here a leg there and did not see a body. I looked in the shell and nothing was left inside. (this was the smaller assertive one). <this is really more like expected hermit crab behavior... they are quite territorial> OK, I think to myself it had to be one of the larger ones and I think it is one over the other. Maybe I didn't have enough food in the cage, etc... So a couple days go by and I am making sure the water is changed daily and food is replenished. I notice though that the smaller of the two shy crabs is a little more of a "wonder" now. I come back home one afternoon to find the other larger assertive crab has been murdered. His big pincher is off, he is completely out of his shell, but this one is still in tact. Now all that is left is the two "shy" crabs. So now I am thinking, no the smaller one couldn't have taken the bigger one it has to be the bigger shy crab that is the culprit. I have been watching him that last couple days and nothing is going on. These two "shy" crabs seem to being living in perfect harmony. Could this be a mating thing or is it just the case of under estimating the "shy" guys? <the latter, my friend :) Hermits by nature are very territorial. We should be grateful the shy two are peaceful with each other. Somewhat unusual for this long. Best regards, Anthony> Tawnya

Land Hermit Crab Compatibility (They Aren't!) HI I am at a total lost about this, I have 3 land hermit crabs that have been together for little over a year, two of them are small in size, and one is mid size. I have just cleans and restocked them with various sized shells for there  enjoyment. Which they have been investigating. One of the smaller ones has taken up resting inside a large shell while he is still in his own shell. like a  double coat of armor. Now for my problem, for the past 2 days the mid size crab has moved on top of one of the smaller one. It holds onto the others shell, completely engulfing it with its body. I have tried separating them and have had the larger one try to pinch me with his claws, and he holds it so tight that they will not separate easily. At times during the day he will raise up and extend his legs in a canopy style hold on the others shell and raise his claws above his head. The little one will come out of the shell only enough to move around within this hold, always staying on the back of the shell.  I have found small shavings of carrots laying on the rim of the smaller ones shell. They are in bite size for this smaller crab, and have seen its claw capture these bites to take into the shell. I have also hear them communicating when ever I come near to them. I have tried to separate them only to have them run,, to each other from the opposite side of the tank, which is really very funny looking for them to do. Is every thing alright and if not what should I do ? If they are mating what do I need to do to keep any of the offspring healthy. These crabs are the focal point in our office, and some of the clients will come in just to watch and laugh at there antis. All during this time they have never acted in this manner before. Thank you, Natalie Carmichael < If you have had them for a year then they may be getting ready to shed their exoskeleton. When they do this they turn a lighter color just before they shed. After they shed they are very soft and pliable and this makes them vulnerable to be eaten by larger crabs. This may be a mating behaviour too but I haven't read anything on hermit crab breeding though. Another possibility is the larger crab may be after eating the little crab when it switches shells revealing its softer body parts. I would separate them for awhile until they have all switched shells.-Chuck> 

Frogs with Crabs? 8/6/05 I have hermit crabs.  I'm wondering if I can put frogs in the same terrarium? Sharon < The first chance they get, the crabs will attack and probably kill the frogs.-Chuck>

Hermit Crab Needs a Home  9/7/05 Hi, My kids have four hermit crabs in a 10 gallon tank.  About 5 days ago, we noticed that one had abandoned it's shell (it also lost it's large claw).  We "offered" it about 5 or six different shells of varying sizes.  However, it's still without a shell.  It's recently lost the other smaller claw but is still moving.  It's actually amazing how much it gets around.  The other crabs don't seem to be bothering it.  Any suggestions or ideas about what's going on?   Thanks for any help. Teresa Collier < I suspect that sometime during the night his shell was taken away by another crab. He lost his claw defending himself. I think that he lost his other claw trying to get a new shell. He obviously doesn't like any that you have offered. I would separate him and try offering the new shells again. These little guys can dehydrate very quickly without their shells. If he is not separated I would not be surprised if the others go after him when they get hungry.-Chuck>

Hermit Crabs, terr.   8/16/06 I recently bought a pair of land hermit crabs at a local pet store. I've had them almost three days now, but they refuse to come out of their plastic cave, even at night. In the morning I check to see if they've been out of the cave by trying to find any tracks, but there aren't any. I've tried misting the tank more often, I've given them each a bath, and I've given them different food each night, but when I check on them in the morning, they're still in the same spot they were when I went to bed the night before. I've taken them out myself to check if they're still alive (they are) but when I put them near their food and water dishes, the scuttle back into the cave. I'm worried they're not eating. I hope you can help! Thanks -Alex P.S.-one is missing his smaller claw, and another is missing her back walking leg on the left side <Insufficient information... Have you checked with your supplier re their previous care, feeding? Please read here: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/FWSubWebIndex/hermitcrabfaqs.htm and the Net in general re these animals care. This may simply be a too-cool temperature situation. Bob Fenner>

Re: Hermit Crabs, terr. <maybe not>  8/17/06 Hello again. I was unable to find any cases related to mine.:( I keep the temperature in my tank between 70 and 80 degrees Fahrenheit, and I mist the tank quite often. My hygrometer isn't working properly (I'm working on fixing it) so I can't tell you the exact humidity, but there is always condensation on the walls of the tank, and the sand is quite damp. <Mmm... do you know the species of Hermits you have? Am wondering how "terrestrial" these are.> I've noticed that my crabs do burrow slightly into the substrate, but only enough to cover less than halfway up the shell. I'm wondering if they might be trying to molt, <More likely trying to "get underwater"> because the sand depth at the pet store was only around a centimeter or two, but they haven't gone near the water dish or food dish. Might I be handling them too much? <Definitely... should be handled the least possible> I take them each out for a few minutes every day (mainly to check if they're alive) and they walk along my hands like a normal crab might, but they always retreat to the safety of the plastic cave once I return them to their tank. Admittedly I haven't provided any saltwater. Could that have something to do with it? <Yes... I do believe so> I'm EXTREMELY new to this and your assistance would be greatly appreciated. -Alex P.S: I have them in a ten gallon tank with a closed lid (small ventilation holes; not enough to let heat or humidity escape) and a fluorescent light for heating. <Do cruise the Net, WWM: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/marine/inverts/arthropoda/crabs/hermitcrabs.htm for ID here... need to know the species first, so you can further seek the habitat, diet of this/these species. Bob Fenner>

Re: Hermit Crabs, terr.   8/17/06 The species is Coenobita clypeatus. I've researched basic care and behavior on hermit-crabs.com, but I think they might be traumatized from the pet store. <Likely a factor here, yes> The tank was very crowded. I'll make sure to provide salt water and remember not to handle them as much. Thanks for all the help! >: ) -Alex <Glad to proffer it. BobF>

Hermit Crab death, terr.    6/25/07 Hi Bob While on vacation in Hilton Head Island, SC I bought two hermit crabs (on Wed.). <"Land" hermits I take it> One was very energetic and always out of his shell, the other one was very shy and took a very long time to come out of her shell. We let them play in a laundry basket for a little bit and later discovered part of her leg was missing. <Mmm, these can regenerate with molts/molting...> Turns out she was already missing a whole leg on one side and a part of a leg missing on the other side. She was always very shy except for when she came out to play with me. I was worried she wasn't eating, but after two days i caught her finally eating. <These animals do have a source of moisture?> She seemed a lot better and happy by Friday. Saturday was our day to leave and drive home to Cleveland, OH. They seemed like they were sleeping the whole way home... When we were home and I went to take them out to play I saw that my girl had not only passed away, but had lost her giant pincher and her leg with the part of it missing! What happened to her? Did she do it to herself? Was she sick? Did the other one do it? <Mmm, can't say... all are possibilities though> The other one is completely fine. I know they should have friends and I should get another one, but I'm scared he killed her. What do you think? Thank you so much, Lindsay <I would do my best to provide care to the one you still have. Have you read here: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/FWSubWebIndex/hermitcrabfaqs.htm

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