Four crabs molting, with a woopsy on my part

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tayc1998
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Joined: Fri Jun 19, 2020 1:18 pm
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Four crabs molting, with a woopsy on my part

Post by tayc1998 » Fri Jun 19, 2020 4:19 pm

1. What kind of substrate is used in your tank and how deep is it? I use Coconut fiber, roughly 4" deep as all my crabs are smaller than a quarter.

2. Do you have gauges in the tank to measure temperature and humidity? If so, where are they located and what temperature and humidity do they usually read? I have analogue gauges for both in the top left corner of the tank, typically reading 80 degrees and usually 75% humidity


3. Is a heat source used in the tank? If so, what? I use an UTH on the back of my tank that almost covers that whole side.


4. What types of water are available (fresh or salt) and how is the water treated (what brands of dechlorinator or salt mix and what ratio is used to mix it)? I use salt and fresh, and am working through the dechlorinater and salt treatment that comes with the starter set. I follow the instructions on the boxes.


5. What kinds of food do you feed and how often is it replaced? I feed them a little of everything. Bell peppers, cherries, carrots, cooked egg yolk, red shrimp, meal worms, mushrooms, basically all the gourmet stuff i can get my hands on. I make sure its safe enough that i could eat it and be fine.


6. How long have you had the crab and what species is it, if known? Ive had them going on a month and believe all four are purple pincers


7. Has your crab molted, and how long ago did it happen? Theyre trying to molt now i think.


8. What type of housing are the crabs kept in, what size is it and what kind of lid is on the housing? they're in a ten gallon, mesh lid that's mostly covered with saran wrap. I have a small vent in it that i slip the fogger in when humidity is needed.


9. How many crabs are in the tank and about how large are they? 4 crabs, no bigger than quarters with the largest being just that size


10. How many extra shells are usually kept in the tank, if any? i keep 3 at any given time


11. Have there been any fumes or chemicals near the crabitat recently? No.


12. How often do you clean the tank and how? i change the food and water daily, check the wood, and have pill bugs for substrate clean up.


13. Are sponges used in the water dish? If so, how are they cleaned? i have a sponge in the fresh water, and rinse it out with my tap water (im on a well system) until im sure its clean.


14. Has anything new been added to your crabitat recently? its a new enclosure so everything's fresh.


15. Is there any other information you would like to share that might be helpful (anything that is regularly part of your crab care, playtime, bathing, etc.)? i like to pick them up once a day to check on them if they're on the surface and active.


16. Please describe the emergency situation in detail. So i went to pick up one of my little guys the other day who was only partially burried as he was in the way (i was trying to change food and water and he was almost right under both) and what i believe to be his exo fell out. Scared me to death, but i realized he dug a cave and gently put him down. I realize he's molting and put a cut off soda bottom over him as best i could to keep the others away. I didn't have an ISO set up yet. Then while thinking about it, all four of my little guys are getting ready to molt! Two of them have been buried for a few days, but my smallest was on the surface. Thinking she might surface molt, i put her in the suspended moss pit to keep her safe, and quickly set up an ISO with favorable conditions. My emergency is that she really hasnt been moving for a few days, but she's getting redder so i know she's going to molt soon. When i picked her up to put her in iso, she was still in her shell, curled up, but relatively limp, and one of my pill bugs is in her shell with her! I'm not sure what to do or what this means. Any advice is greatly appreciated!!!!!


.

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GotButterflies
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Re: Four crabs molting, with a woopsy on my part

Post by GotButterflies » Fri Jun 19, 2020 5:06 pm

Hello! Welcome to the HCA! I answered your questions with GB for GotButterflies :)
tayc1998 wrote:
Fri Jun 19, 2020 4:19 pm
1. What kind of substrate is used in your tank and how deep is it? I use Coconut fiber, roughly 4" deep as all my crabs are smaller than a quarter.

GB: Great! IMO, for purple pinchers substrate should be 6 inches or 3 times the height of your largest crab (whichever is deeper). If you have Es substrate should be at least 10-12”. Substrate should be mixed with dechlorinated marine saltwater or dechlorinated freshwater to make the substrate sandcastle consistency. I personally mix mine with dechlorinated marine saltwater.


2. Do you have gauges in the tank to measure temperature and humidity? If so, where are they located and what temperature and humidity do they usually read? I have analogue gauges for both in the top left corner of the tank, typically reading 80 degrees and usually 75% humidity

GB: :) IMO, minimum heat and humidity should be 80/80. Hermit crabs have modified gills and need the humidity to breathe. Also IMO analog gauges are not accurate.
You can buy an Acurite guage from Amazon, digital, runs on batteries, tells you temp and humidity currently as well as low and high for last 24 hours: https://smile.amazon.com/AcuRite-00325- ... 184&sr=8-2

Humidity boosters: Bubblers definitely do help boost the humidity. Double dish bubblers: http://hermitcrabassociation.com/phpBB/ ... r#p1030806

You can also add moss pits to help. You would use organic moss (as well as moss that is on the safe list), and moisten it with dechlorinated fresh water. Then, put the moss in a shower caddy or a glass vase laying on it's side so the hermits can walk in and out of it. Glass tops also help keep humidity in.


3. Is a heat source used in the tank? If so, what? I use an UTH on the back of my tank that almost covers that whole side.


4. What types of water are available (fresh or salt) and how is the water treated (what brands of dechlorinator or salt mix and what ratio is used to mix it)? I use salt and fresh, and am working through the dechlorinater and salt treatment that comes with the starter set. I follow the instructions on the boxes.

GB: Unfortunately most products marketed for hermit crabs are not safe. A lot of us use a product called Instant Ocean which is what aquarium hobbyists use to make saltwater aquariums. It has the essential trace elements that hermit crabs need. :) You need a dechlorinator that removes chlorine, and chloramine as well as neutralizes ammonia and heavy metals. A lot of us use a product called Prime. As far as salt, you need marine salt, to mimic the ocean. You have to use the dechlorinator for both freshwater and marine saltwater. Both pools should be deep enough for them to fully submerge in and safe enough for them to get out of.

5. What kinds of food do you feed and how often is it replaced? I feed them a little of everything. Bell peppers, cherries, carrots, cooked egg yolk, red shrimp, meal worms, mushrooms, basically all the gourmet stuff i can get my hands on. I make sure its safe enough that i could eat it and be fine.

GB: Hermit crabs can eat a lot of the same things that we eat. Just check to make sure the item is on the safe list. Foods should be organic when possible. Hermit crabs are sensitive to pesticides and fertilizers.
You also want to provide one or more calcium sources at a time. Examples would be Cuttlebone, Organic Eggshell, Oyster Shell, Lobster Exo, Shrimp Exo.
Make sure you cover all aspects of food pyramid :)
Safe food list: http://hermitcrabassociation.com/phpBB/ ... 25&t=92557
Unsafe food list: http://hermitcrabassociation.com/phpBB/ ... 25&t=92556
Food pyramid: http://hermitcrabassociation.com/phpBB/ ... 25&t=92554


6. How long have you had the crab and what species is it, if known? Ive had them going on a month and believe all four are purple pincers


7. Has your crab molted, and how long ago did it happen? Theyre trying to molt now i think.


8. What type of housing are the crabs kept in, what size is it and what kind of lid is on the housing? they're in a ten gallon, mesh lid that's mostly covered with saran wrap. I have a small vent in it that i slip the fogger in when humidity is needed.

GB: With mesh lids you can also cover them with Press-N-Seal, or tape Ziploc bags on them to help keep the humidty in. I personally love glass tops. Please be careful with foggers. They can cause your tank to flood.


9. How many crabs are in the tank and about how large are they? 4 crabs, no bigger than quarters with the largest being just that size

10. How many extra shells are usually kept in the tank, if any? i keep 3 at any given time

GB: The HCA recommends 3-5 shells per hermit crab. I personally recommend more. It never hurts to have more :) There are incorrect shells to buy. Here is the shell guide: http://hermitcrabassociation.com/phpBB/ ... 24&t=92552

11. Have there been any fumes or chemicals near the crabitat recently? No.


12. How often do you clean the tank and how? i change the food and water daily, check the wood, and have pill bugs for substrate clean up.


13. Are sponges used in the water dish? If so, how are they cleaned? i have a sponge in the fresh water, and rinse it out with my tap water (im on a well system) until im sure its clean.

GB: Sponges can be used as a food source. Squeeze all of the water out of it and put it directly on the substrate. Do not place them in the water bowls.

14. Has anything new been added to your crabitat recently? its a new enclosure so everything's fresh.


15. Is there any other information you would like to share that might be helpful (anything that is regularly part of your crab care, playtime, bathing, etc.)? i like to pick them up once a day to check on them if they're on the surface and active.


16. Please describe the emergency situation in detail. So i went to pick up one of my little guys the other day who was only partially burried as he was in the way (i was trying to change food and water and he was almost right under both) and what i believe to be his exo fell out. Scared me to death, but i realized he dug a cave and gently put him down. I realize he's molting and put a cut off soda bottom over him as best i could to keep the others away. I didn't have an ISO set up yet. Then while thinking about it, all four of my little guys are getting ready to molt! Two of them have been buried for a few days, but my smallest was on the surface. Thinking she might surface molt, i put her in the suspended moss pit to keep her safe, and quickly set up an ISO with favorable conditions. My emergency is that she really hasnt been moving for a few days, but she's getting redder so i know she's going to molt soon. When i picked her up to put her in iso, she was still in her shell, curled up, but relatively limp, and one of my pill bugs is in her shell with her! I'm not sure what to do or what this means. Any advice is greatly appreciated!!!!!

GB: You could use a soft paint brush to remove the pill bug if necessary. Make sure you give her/him their exo to eat. If exo is gone, provide honey, calcium, protein, fresh and marine saltwater. Keep separated until completely active. :) Best wishes!
.
Truly blessed to have incredible creatures, wonderful friends and my amazing family in my life!! I'm very thankful & grateful for all of them! www.thehealthyhermit.com


Topic author
tayc1998
Posts: 9
Joined: Fri Jun 19, 2020 1:18 pm
Location: United States

Re: Four crabs molting, with a woopsy on my part

Post by tayc1998 » Fri Jun 19, 2020 5:30 pm

GotButterflies wrote:
Fri Jun 19, 2020 5:06 pm
Hello! Welcome to the HCA! I answered your questions with GB for GotButterflies :)
Thanks for the info! I do have a moss pit, and only use the fogger when needed. I was going to clean out my tank and add more substrate before i noticed my crabs getting ready to molt, so now it needs to wait till their settled, right? Do you know where i can get the proper mix-ins for the water?
As far as my little crab goes, with how limp she is, how can i tell if she's dead or not? I know they typically go like that when they molt, but it's still worrysome.

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Re: Four crabs molting, with a woopsy on my part

Post by C_fiesta » Fri Jun 19, 2020 10:22 pm

tayc1998 wrote:
Fri Jun 19, 2020 5:30 pm
Thanks for the info! I do have a moss pit, and only use the fogger when needed. I was going to clean out my tank and add more substrate before i noticed my crabs getting ready to molt, so now it needs to wait till their settled, right? Do you know where i can get the proper mix-ins for the water?
As far as my little crab goes, with how limp she is, how can i tell if she's dead or not? I know they typically go like that when they molt, but it's still worrysome.
You can gently place substrate on the surface, just don't pat it down. 1" per 24 hours is recommended. You can buy Seachem Prime and Instant Ocean at Petco, Petsmart, Chewy.com, or Amazon.com. Dead crabs completely fall out of the shell with no life left and smell terrible. When crabs are molting, they are fragile and very delicate. I would recommend for you to stop handling until after their molt. If you haven't isolated her yet, you can do that too.


Topic author
tayc1998
Posts: 9
Joined: Fri Jun 19, 2020 1:18 pm
Location: United States

Re: Four crabs molting, with a woopsy on my part

Post by tayc1998 » Sat Jun 20, 2020 10:14 am

C_fiesta wrote:
Fri Jun 19, 2020 10:22 pm
You can gently place substrate on the surface, just don't pat it down. 1" per 24 hours is recommended. You can buy Seachem Prime and Instant Ocean at Petco, Petsmart, Chewy.com, or Amazon.com. Dead crabs completely fall out of the shell with no life left and smell terrible. When crabs are molting, they are fragile and very delicate. I would recommend for you to stop handling until after their molt. If you haven't isolated her yet, you can do that too.

Ok, thank you! So far, ive really only handled them to put them in iso, and get the pill bug out of the ones shell. Additional question about the shells, should i put them in the ISO tank, or the main?

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Re: Four crabs molting, with a woopsy on my part

Post by C_fiesta » Mon Jun 22, 2020 9:51 am

tayc1998 wrote:
Sat Jun 20, 2020 10:14 am
Ok, thank you! So far, ive really only handled them to put them in iso, and get the pill bug out of the ones shell. Additional question about the shells, should i put them in the ISO tank, or the main?
Extra shells should be where the crabs are. So if you have one in iso and one in main tank, divide shells into each. You don't have to put a ton in iso, as much as your main tank, because you can hand select shells that are most likely going to be a match with the recovering crab. She might not take any while in ISO, but if there's room, I like to give the option to the crab.

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