Possible Molting Disruption

Please post here if you are having a crab care emergency! Use a real subject and not just "HELP!"
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CrazyDiabetic
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Possible Molting Disruption

Post by CrazyDiabetic » Tue Jul 07, 2020 1:58 pm

1. What kind of substrate is used in your tank and how deep is it?
Coconut Fiber, about 4 inches deep.


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?
Yes, a hygrometer in the top-right corner. Temp reads between 75 and 80 degrees, and humidity stays at ~80%.


3. Is a heat source used in the tank? If so, what?
Yes, a heating pad attached to the outside right wall of the tank.


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)?
Fresh and salt water, purified by Nutrafin de-chlorination solution and aquarium salt.


5. What kinds of food do you feed and how often is it replaced?
Apples, strawberries and dried river shrimp on a cycle and replaced every other day.


6. How long have you had the crab and what species is it, if known?
Purple Pincher, roughly 2 and a half weeks.


7. Has your crab molted, and how long ago did it happen?
Not sure, kinda part of the emergency.


8. What type of housing are the crabs kept in, what size is it and what kind of lid is on the housing?
15 gallon tank with a solid lid, not mesh.


9. How many crabs are in the tank and about how large are they?
3 crabs total, roughly golf-ball sized.


10. How many extra shells are usually kept in the tank, if any?
3 extra shells, none painted.


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

12. How often do you clean the tank and how?
~Once a month. Complete substrate replacement, and I wash the sides and plastic plants with hot water.

13. Are sponges used in the water dish? If so, how are they cleaned?
No.

14. Has anything new been added to your crabitat recently?
Sphagnum moss, about 3 weeks ago.

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.)?
Not that I can think of.

16. Please describe the emergency situation in detail.
My new crab that I got about 2 weeks ago. When I introduced him to the tank, he drank a lot from the saltwater dish and I had to refill it about 3 times. I assumed that he was dehydrated after being in a low-staffed pet store during the lock-down. After that, he went missing and i assumed he burrowed to molt. Yesterday, one of my other crabs went missing as well, which I thought weird as she just came up from a molt in early June and is still very active. I checked under the caves, in the plants and behind the climbing wall. Nothing. I know she didn't escape because i keep a heavy pot on the part of the lid that opens, and they couldn't reach that part anyways. This morning, I hear an angry chirping and i see my new crab underground through an exposed tunnel. I'm worried that crab #2 is down there with my new crab and will interrupt his molt/try to eat him. I haven't dug anything up yet. Whats the best plan of action moving forward?


.

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GotButterflies
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Re: Possible Molting Disruption

Post by GotButterflies » Wed Jul 08, 2020 8:57 am

I responded with GB for Gotbutterflies :)
CrazyDiabetic wrote:
Tue Jul 07, 2020 1:58 pm
1. What kind of substrate is used in your tank and how deep is it?
Coconut Fiber, about 4 inches deep.

GB: 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?
Yes, a hygrometer in the top-right corner. Temp reads between 75 and 80 degrees, and humidity stays at ~80%.

GB: IMO, minimum heat and humidity should be 80/80. Hermit crabs have modified gills and need the humidity to breathe.
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?
Yes, a heating pad attached to the outside right wall of the tank.

GB: IMO it would be better if you could get your heat up to at least 80. You can try to insulate around your heat pad with aluminum foil (shiny part facing the crabitat), then cardboard. Don't insulate over your heating pad if it is a zoomed. If doing the insulation doesn't raise your temperature, you might want to consider getting a better heater. Most of us use ultratherms. They are great heaters. www.reptilebasics.com or www.beanfarm.com sells them.


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)?
Fresh and salt water, purified by Nutrafin de-chlorination solution and aquarium salt.

GB: Unfortunately aquarium salt is not the correct kind of salt to use. That product is for freshwater fish. As far as salt, you need marine salt, to mimic the ocean. 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. :) Make sure that your dechlorinator removes chlorine, and chloramine as well as neutralizes ammonia and heavy metals. A lot of us use a product called Prime. 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?
Apples, strawberries and dried river shrimp on a cycle and replaced every other day.

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 all times. 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?
Purple Pincher, roughly 2 and a half weeks.


7. Has your crab molted, and how long ago did it happen?
Not sure, kinda part of the emergency.


8. What type of housing are the crabs kept in, what size is it and what kind of lid is on the housing?
15 gallon tank with a solid lid, not mesh.

GB: Like a fish tank lid? Cover it any openings with press -n- seal and then tape them with packaging tape to avoid escape.

9. How many crabs are in the tank and about how large are they?
3 crabs total, roughly golf-ball sized.


10. How many extra shells are usually kept in the tank, if any?
3 extra shells, none painted.

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?
~Once a month. Complete substrate replacement, and I wash the sides and plastic plants with hot water.

GB: It is not necessary to change the substrate unless you have a bacteria bloom or flooding. Just scoop poop and change food and water.

13. Are sponges used in the water dish? If so, how are they cleaned?
No.

14. Has anything new been added to your crabitat recently?
Sphagnum moss, about 3 weeks ago.

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.)?
Not that I can think of.

16. Please describe the emergency situation in detail.
My new crab that I got about 2 weeks ago. When I introduced him to the tank, he drank a lot from the saltwater dish and I had to refill it about 3 times. I assumed that he was dehydrated after being in a low-staffed pet store during the lock-down. After that, he went missing and i assumed he burrowed to molt. Yesterday, one of my other crabs went missing as well, which I thought weird as she just came up from a molt in early June and is still very active. I checked under the caves, in the plants and behind the climbing wall. Nothing. I know she didn't escape because i keep a heavy pot on the part of the lid that opens, and they couldn't reach that part anyways. This morning, I hear an angry chirping and i see my new crab underground through an exposed tunnel. I'm worried that crab #2 is down there with my new crab and will interrupt his molt/try to eat him. I haven't dug anything up yet. Whats the best plan of action moving forward?

GB: If you fix the issues I listed above, you will not have problems with your crabs. They will canabalize one another due to lack of nutrients.
.
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

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CrazyDiabetic
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Location: Canada

Re: Possible Molting Disruption

Post by CrazyDiabetic » Wed Jul 08, 2020 1:12 pm

A little late, but thanks for the response. I've moved my new crab into the iso, and he has since eaten, drank and re-burrowed. Do I need to be worried that my one crab will continue to dig up my other crabs as they burrow? I know they're not lacking nutrients or starving, I give them lots of protein, calcium and fruit.

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GotButterflies
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Re: Possible Molting Disruption

Post by GotButterflies » Wed Jul 08, 2020 4:58 pm

CrazyDiabetic wrote:
Wed Jul 08, 2020 1:12 pm
A little late, but thanks for the response. I've moved my new crab into the iso, and he has since eaten, drank and re-burrowed. Do I need to be worried that my one crab will continue to dig up my other crabs as they burrow? I know they're not lacking nutrients or starving, I give them lots of protein, calcium and fruit.
Please know that our positions as Administrators and Moderators are volunteer positions. I, myself, try to log onto this community as much as I can. I noticed that you stated you live in Canada. There is also a time difference. It is not necessary for you to be rude. We are a wonderful community that is here to help one another.

You stated that you fed your crabs a diet of "Apples, strawberries and dried river shrimp on a cycle and replaced every other day."

I'm sorry, but unfortunately that is not a sufficient diet for hermit crabs. I then provided you with the following information: 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 all times. 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

Typically when you have met all aspects of the food pyramid, have the environmental factors have been met as well, you don't have cannibalism. 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

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CrazyDiabetic
Posts: 11
Joined: Sun Jan 12, 2020 4:16 pm
Location: Canada

Re: Possible Molting Disruption

Post by CrazyDiabetic » Wed Jul 08, 2020 6:11 pm

GotButterflies wrote:
Wed Jul 08, 2020 4:58 pm
Please know that our positions as Administrators and Moderators are volunteer positions. I, myself, try to log onto this community as much as I can. I noticed that you stated you live in Canada. There is also a time difference. It is not necessary for you to be rude. We are a wonderful community that is here to help one another.

You stated that you fed your crabs a diet of "Apples, strawberries and dried river shrimp on a cycle and replaced every other day."

I'm sorry, but unfortunately that is not a sufficient diet for hermit crabs. I then provided you with the following information: 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 all times. 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

Typically when you have met all aspects of the food pyramid, have the environmental factors have been met as well, you don't have cannibalism. Best wishes.
I know, I apologize. I was just pretty anxious, you know? I'm doing my best to look after these guys and I had no clue what to do in the immediate situation, though that's no reason for being short. I felt that my pet, that I'm responsible for, was in danger and I had no clue what to do. I know you guys are volunteers and don't deserve backlash, you're all very helpful.

All the best, and sorry for being short!

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GotButterflies
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Re: Possible Molting Disruption

Post by GotButterflies » Thu Jul 09, 2020 3:21 pm

CrazyDiabetic wrote:
Wed Jul 08, 2020 6:11 pm
I know, I apologize. I was just pretty anxious, you know? I'm doing my best to look after these guys and I had no clue what to do in the immediate situation, though that's no reason for being short. I felt that my pet, that I'm responsible for, was in danger and I had no clue what to do. I know you guys are volunteers and don't deserve backlash, you're all very helpful.

All the best, and sorry for being short!
Thank you for your apology. :) I appreciate it. I understand how you probably have felt in the moment! Are you a member of our Facebook group? Facebook might get you a quicker response. :) 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

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