Breeding and Adopting Out

This area is dedicated to the pioneers who have captive bred crabs, and for those who wish to learn more or attempt it themselves. Also for inquiring about the gender of your crabs.
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Slsherrill
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Re: Breeding and Adopting Out

Post by Slsherrill » Thu Jan 09, 2020 4:52 pm

Sadly, most pet stores are NOT going to provide proper conditions for the crabs. It’s hard to sell a crab that’s been buried in 6 inches of substrate for months and no one can even see what they are purchasing. :( :( Most are there to turn a profit, not do what’s best for the animals. Sad situation.
Mom to: 2 human kids (6 & 10), 1 scruffy mutt (Waffles - 3 years old), 1 rough-skinned newt (Figgy - 19+ years), and 2 PP crabbies (Hermie & Alice - 5 years).


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crablady03
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Re: Breeding and Adopting Out

Post by crablady03 » Mon Jan 13, 2020 10:48 am

JR, That is a very good point about selling them to pet stores to prevent them from taking wild crabs. I could try to get in touch with PetSmart and Petco Corporate offices to ask if they would provide more information for hermit crabs as they do with any other animal. We could try to ask the pet stores to educate the people who buy them as pets. Any other ideas though, that seems a bit extreme?

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Links
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Re: Breeding and Adopting Out

Post by Links » Mon Jan 13, 2020 11:58 am

It won’t be easy. We need more people breeding which is too much to ask for at this point and if we ever have enough breeding then what will the overhead be? Will the crabs be so expensive the stores won’t buy them? Every little bit does help and at least all of us here know we can adopt. So that’s a start and will save some wild crabs.


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DevilNDisguise
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Re: Breeding and Adopting Out

Post by DevilNDisguise » Mon Jan 13, 2020 12:09 pm

crablady03 wrote:
Mon Jan 13, 2020 10:48 am
JR, That is a very good point about selling them to pet stores to prevent them from taking wild crabs. I could try to get in touch with PetSmart and Petco Corporate offices to ask if they would provide more information for hermit crabs as they do with any other animal. We could try to ask the pet stores to educate the people who buy them as pets. Any other ideas though, that seems a bit extreme?
I work at a pet store and unfortunately, getting things to change can be difficult. Not impossible, but very difficult. Animal enclosures have to be set up accordingly to the standards that have been given to us by corporate. We have binders with pictures on how the enclosures should look and if these aren't accurately followed, we can get into trouble.

The hermit crab set up is very poorly pictured and advised, unsurprisingly, but depending on how strict the managers and district managers are of these places, will depend on how much the enclosures can be changed to better suit the animal in care. It's a store-to-store basis kind of thing.
Fortunately, for the store I work at, no one bats an eye at the hermit crabs. Since getting into the hermit crab hobby, I've done my best to educate everyone in the store on the care of these critters, but whether others care or not to follow-through isn't something I've been able to control. We have a self-made care-guide in our department as well, for everyone to look over if they or customers have questions. We have done our best to give them the right conditions, but unfortunately, where they're located, they don't have access to heat and their enclosure isn't able to hold humidity.

So while we've definitely tried, it still isn't the best for them, and we actually more frequently have been getting more and more people who come in and point that out to us. Some politely, others rather angrily.

I definitely agree with pointing it out, and for everyone to contact the higher-ups about it. But certainly going directly to the store itself has shown changes before, even within all of our very strict limitations. It's all definitely worth a shot, just try to keep a cool head when you do it.

Sorry for the long post! Just wanted to give some insight to how things work from being on the inside, and why it can be so hard for stores to change. I have seen lots of people in the past handle the situation angrily, when there's truly nothing more we can do, and most of the time people won't listen to a customer who's furiously lashing out at them.

But education is key. The more people who know how to properly take care of hermit crabs, the more awareness will be brought to the poor situations they are left in. So, as for it being extreme? It really isn't. It's shown to make a difference before, even a small one, so we just have to keep on trying.
1 Bearded Dragon, 1 Guinea Pig, 1 Mouse, 1 Lovebird, 1 Dog, 2 Cats, 2 Rabbits, 2 Frogs, 2 Cockatiels, 2 Budgies & Their 3 Babies, 3 Rats, 4 Hamsters, and Many Hermit Crabs!

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mlakers
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Re: Breeding and Adopting Out

Post by mlakers » Fri Jan 17, 2020 1:52 pm

Well, it would be nice if the big chain pet stores would get on board, but I don't think that's very likely. And it's not just with hermit crabs that they are falling short, either. Pet stores are, first and foremost, for-profit businesses, and their bottom line LIKES buying hermit crabs in bulk for 65 cents a crab and then selling them in multiples for $6.99 each. They can afford to have thousands die at that profit margin and therefore have zero incentive to purchase ethically sourced (captive-bred) crabs as long as people keep buying wild-caught ones.

Really, the only to way to get that model to change from the inside is to somehow convince the big chains that they will make more money endorsing different crab-care practices. Corporate pet store chains are really, really thick when it comes to this. I've written letters detailing how much more money they could actually make if they gave out proper care advice: Tanks! Lids! Aquarium decor! Filtered pools! Freeze-dried proteins! Most of us have spent thousands of dollars in pet stores (or online pet stores) creating good setups for our hermits. But the chain pet stores remain convinced (and maybe they're right) that they make more money selling cheap hermits and cheap enclosures to millions of kids as "good starter pets" than they would as exotic pets with complex needs. If nothing else, they have a high turnover rate when the crabs die after a few months and the distraught kid convinces the parents to buy replacements. It really is appalling how very little these beautiful creatures are valued by the very people who are profiting off of their capture and resale. :cry:

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Links
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Re: Breeding and Adopting Out

Post by Links » Fri Jan 17, 2020 3:08 pm

Well then I think I’ll we can do is put the information out there and hopefully more people will pick up on it technology and the Internet are good for that. Start making YouTube videos and anything else you can do to show how to properly care for hermit crabs.


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Re: Breeding and Adopting Out

Post by Motörcrab » Sat Jan 18, 2020 11:58 am

I have been thinking about hermit sales in most stores too. I have to agree with Mary on their thought process for sales. Market hermits as a great starter pet, easy to care for and minimal requirements. Get everything you need including two crabs for $50. Or market as the exotic pets they are and spend $200 or more on all the proper stuff. If you are buying crabs as a first pet why would they need more care and space than a fuzzy hamster? A hamster is much bigger than the crab.

Unfortunately due to the misinformation of hermit crab care for decades they have a bad reputation for not living long. I have had dozens of conversations about hermits with non crab keepers. Every conversation starts with I had them years ago and they all died in a few months. I can understand why most people are unwilling to spend the money on a proper care.

I have only seen one pet store inform customers on a proper set up. I have spoken up several times when people are purchasing wire cages. It's not like I'm an employee so most people are like what do I know. I have had one person pick up instant ocean for $10 rather than a bottle of hermit crab saltwater.
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Renroc
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Re: Breeding and Adopting Out

Post by Renroc » Mon Jan 20, 2020 7:43 am

Having the right habitat to encourage breeding isn't all that difficult and now that many more people are keeping crabs in good conditions we are seeing a lot more with eggs.
It is the stages after they are deposited in the salt water that cause the difficulties. Anything we do needs to mimic the ocean as closely as possible. It requires a constant current that is not too strong. A day and night cycle Constant water temperature, constant clean water, the right food in the right amount at the right time, provision of shells that are suitable and then a method of getting out of the water and onto land to do a final molt before actually becoming land hermits.

Getting all this right is what will lead to success as a few people have discovered. Also different species grow and develop at different rates and have different life cycles in the water. For example Coenabita varibilis (Australian crabs) only spend 10-12 days in the water stage and have a fewer number of molts before needing land. Other species spend 40+ days in the water before venturing to land. They all prefer different shell types and sizes and food.

Believe me raising zoea is no mean feat and is a time consuming and stressful experience. I am ever so glad that I did it and succeeded. BUT I am also really really happy I only had 2 weeks of water changes and feeding and bubbles and shell choices. NOT sure I could last the distance for some of the species that spend way longer in the water stage.
Good luck with your project though.
Crazy crab lady with 2 babies raised in captivity. One female on male and one unknown. Also 2 adults living in a 4ft tank. Hope to get some girls soon to have another breeding attempt.


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crablady03
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Re: Breeding and Adopting Out

Post by crablady03 » Fri Jan 24, 2020 9:28 am

I have began my set up with the project and I am getting more crabs to attempt. I will be in the Miss FFA pageant so hopefully i would be able to advocate more hermit crab breeding. this is a start to something i can feel it. also is mlakers the mary akers that is so famous in the hermit crab world? lol

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JoeHermits
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Re: Breeding and Adopting Out

Post by JoeHermits » Fri Jan 24, 2020 9:48 am

crablady03 wrote:I have began my set up with the project and I am getting more crabs to attempt. I will be in the Miss FFA pageant so hopefully i would be able to advocate more hermit crab breeding. this is a start to something i can feel it. also is mlakers the mary akers that is so famous in the hermit crab world? lol
Yes, she is.


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Links
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Re: Breeding and Adopting Out

Post by Links » Tue Jan 28, 2020 12:11 pm

https://www.houstonfishbox.com/vforums/ ... ank-Design

Not sure if you’ve already set up something like this but it’s a great diy idea.


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Re: Breeding and Adopting Out

Post by JoeHermits » Tue Jan 28, 2020 1:51 pm

jrleath wrote:https://www.houstonfishbox.com/vforums/ ... ank-Design

Not sure if you’ve already set up something like this but it’s a great diy idea.


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This is the exact post I used as reference when I built my Kreisel. It really does work, but make sure the mesh is taut when it’s being epoxied in place or it’ll turn into a pocket.


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mlakers
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Re: Breeding and Adopting Out

Post by mlakers » Wed Feb 12, 2020 11:46 am

JoeHermits wrote:
Tue Jan 28, 2020 1:51 pm
This is the exact post I used as reference when I built my Kreisel. It really does work, but make sure the mesh is taut when it’s being epoxied in place or it’ll turn into a pocket.
This design is more or less what I did that worked so well for me. I did it the first year in a 20 gallon breeder, with two water bottles side-by-side, then the next year made one in a ten-gallon tank to try and find ways to simplify the process for others. Three things I would suggest/caution you about if you are planning to do this for breeding hermits:

1) Leave the bottom of the water bottle intact and only cut off the top. It means far less siliconing, gives greater structural integrity to the kreisel, and water flow works just fine with a rounded back end--better, even, since mine sometimes got "stuck" and died at the siliconed joint in the front.

2) Because of the plastic "lip" designed to seat a tank lid, you will either need to cut your water bottle a little smaller than the width of the tank in order to get it into the tank, or cut away part of the lip in order to slide your water bottle into place. I tried both, and by far the easier task was to cut the water bottle a bit shorter. I then siliconed some pvc spacers at the back of the tank, against the bottom of the water bottle to keep it tight. The heavy plastic rims of tanks are really thick and therefore difficult to trim (especially at that weird angle), even using a heavy-duty hacksaw blade. Lots of bad words were involved.

3) I've come to believe (after my own experience and talking with others who have built kreisels) that the traditional kreisel with a screen for water exchange is much trickier to use for breeding hermits than for jellyfish or seahorses (and the like) because on days that the zoeae shed, there are thousands of nearly invisible exoskeletons that float and will clog the screen and cause overflow issues. There are probably ways around that, but I believe that the ways to get around it may involve more time and risk than just exchanging water regularly.

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FJrocks003
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Re: Breeding and Adopting Out

Post by FJrocks003 » Sat May 23, 2020 7:16 am

JoeHermits wrote:
Wed Jan 08, 2020 4:36 pm
Now that’s what I call a dream tank.


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That is literally what I was dreaming about last night lol
Proud owner of two snakes, one dog, too many fish, and 3 hermit crabs.


CrabHappens
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Re: Breeding and Adopting Out

Post by CrabHappens » Wed Jun 17, 2020 8:19 am

mlakers wrote:
Wed Feb 12, 2020 11:46 am
This design is more or less what I did that worked so well for me. I did it the first year in a 20 gallon breeder, with two water bottles side-by-side, then the next year made one in a ten-gallon tank to try and find ways to simplify the process for others. Three things I would suggest/caution you about if you are planning to do this for breeding hermits:

1) Leave the bottom of the water bottle intact and only cut off the top. It means far less siliconing, gives greater structural integrity to the kreisel, and water flow works just fine with a rounded back end--better, even, since mine sometimes got "stuck" and died at the siliconed joint in the front.

2) Because of the plastic "lip" designed to seat a tank lid, you will either need to cut your water bottle a little smaller than the width of the tank in order to get it into the tank, or cut away part of the lip in order to slide your water bottle into place. I tried both, and by far the easier task was to cut the water bottle a bit shorter. I then siliconed some pvc spacers at the back of the tank, against the bottom of the water bottle to keep it tight. The heavy plastic rims of tanks are really thick and therefore difficult to trim (especially at that weird angle), even using a heavy-duty hacksaw blade. Lots of bad words were involved.

3) I've come to believe (after my own experience and talking with others who have built kreisels) that the traditional kreisel with a screen for water exchange is much trickier to use for breeding hermits than for jellyfish or seahorses (and the like) because on days that the zoeae shed, there are thousands of nearly invisible exoskeletons that float and will clog the screen and cause overflow issues. There are probably ways around that, but I believe that the ways to get around it may involve more time and risk than just exchanging water regularly.
You're awesome. I have all the stuff on the way that I'll need to make a kreisal and I was trying to work out the exact issue of getting the water bottle to fit perfectly. I'm having a little trouble picturing the PVC spacer but thank you for explaining the process you used. I had already considered straight up removing the top frame of the tank, but that seems like much more work and I don't know how much the top frame actually does for supporting the glass.

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