newbie alert!

Please post here if you are a new crab owner and someone will be along shortly to welcome you to the HCA! This is also the place to welcome new crabbies to your clan!

Topic author
agentcrabby
Posts: 128
Joined: Fri Jul 29, 2016 2:13 pm

newbie alert!

Post by agentcrabby » Fri Jul 29, 2016 2:22 pm

So, I have 2 new approx. 2 inch purple crabs. Baked beach sand w 5 to one ratio with EE. I have 2 water containers, salt and fresh. I changed food daily trying lots of different things from the approved list. My crabs never are active during the day. Humidity stays pretty good. Its been about 3 weeks since we got them from PetSmart.
Questions
Whenever I handle them, they drop water. Is that a defense mechanism because they are scared?

Should I handle them during daylight, since they are nocturnal?

One has dug down into an area where the substrate is too dry and the tunnel collapsed. I am guessing he was going to molt. Should I dig him out so he doesn't suffocate? Or is it better not to disturb him?

Also, I need to change the substrate. Is it ok to change if a crab has dug down?

They don't eat much. I try many different foods from the approved list. How much should they eat?

I am very worried!!

Thanks so much

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CrabbyCakes
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Joined: Thu Aug 06, 2015 11:09 am

Re: newbie alert!

Post by CrabbyCakes » Fri Jul 29, 2016 3:15 pm

First hello! I think I can help alittle.

So, I have 2 new approx. 2 inch purple crabs. Baked beach sand w 5 to one ratio with EE. I have 2 water containers, salt and fresh. I changed food daily trying lots of different things from the approved list. My crabs never are active during the day. Humidity stays pretty good. Its been about 3 weeks since we got them from PetSmart.
congrats!
Questions

Whenever I handle them, they drop water. Is that a defense mechanism because they are scared?
My guess is this is water that is in the shell and gravity has taken over.

Should I handle them during daylight, since they are nocturnal?
I am not sure if the time of day matters. I have found mine are happier if I leave them be and just look.

One has dug down into an area where the substrate is too dry and the tunnel collapsed. I am guessing he was going to molt. Should I dig him out so he doesn't suffocate? Or is it better not to disturb him?
I would leave the little guy be. I would work on getting the substrate moist. As you mix it up you can pour water into it.

Also, I need to change the substrate. Is it ok to change if a crab has dug down?
I would not. Also, once you have the hang of it you should not need to change the sub very often at all. I have not changed mine in over a year. At first when I was figuring it out I had some issues with bacterial blooms and needed to change it.

They don't eat much. I try many different foods from the approved list. How much should they eat?
I put out a little dish every day. If I notice it is all gone I put more out but I am not sure if you need to give a specific amount.

I hope that helped a little!
“There are some who can live without wild things and some who cannot.” ― Aldo Leopold

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KayedeeLove<3
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Re: newbie alert!

Post by KayedeeLove<3 » Fri Jul 29, 2016 5:10 pm

I recently had to excavate my tank with molters down for dry sub! However, with new crabs, they are already high stress. I would dampen the sub and wait till they all come up then quickly take them out and mix in the water thoroughly. Mine all dug down for a couple weeks when i brought them home just to come back up. At some point you will have to properly mix it though. My tank is so big there was no way to dampen it but the more it dried the more my humidity dropped! It came to a point where it was potentially lose them all or potentially lose two. So my question to you is what size is your tank?

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Topic author
agentcrabby
Posts: 128
Joined: Fri Jul 29, 2016 2:13 pm

Re: newbie alert!

Post by agentcrabby » Fri Jul 29, 2016 8:53 pm

I did the fastest change humanly possible and it paid off! My big crab who was buried is climbing and checking out the tank (at night). At least he isn't buried. So far so good. I think the clean and wetter substrate is what he wanted.
btw, 10gallon as I am a middle class...
I just want them happy!!! so nervous.

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soilentgringa
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Re: newbie alert!

Post by soilentgringa » Sun Jul 31, 2016 6:50 pm

They are nocturnal. Handling stresses them out. They aren't really pets that you play with. They view anything larger than them as a predator and especially when new, should be left alone.

Read through all the care guides; they have good info that will help you make sure your crabs are having a good life.


Topic author
agentcrabby
Posts: 128
Joined: Fri Jul 29, 2016 2:13 pm

Re: newbie alert!

Post by agentcrabby » Sat Aug 06, 2016 4:09 pm

So they both have buried themselves in an area that I can't see. I keep changing the food and waters.

I just leave them alone and keep changing food and waters right?

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soilentgringa
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Location: Dallas, TX

Re: newbie alert!

Post by soilentgringa » Sun Aug 07, 2016 12:01 am

agentcrabby wrote:So they both have buried themselves in an area that I can't see. I keep changing the food and waters.

I just leave them alone and keep changing food and waters right?
If they are both buried I would just place some dried food in the tat and change the waters every few days and leave it till you see that they've resurfaced.

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Topic author
agentcrabby
Posts: 128
Joined: Fri Jul 29, 2016 2:13 pm

Re: newbie alert!

Post by agentcrabby » Sun Aug 07, 2016 11:12 am

Ok. Which dried food should I use?

Does it matter that I can't see where they buried themselves as I am concerned it may have caved on top of them?

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soilentgringa
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Location: Dallas, TX

Re: newbie alert!

Post by soilentgringa » Sun Aug 07, 2016 4:40 pm

agentcrabby wrote:Ok. Which dried food should I use?

Does it matter that I can't see where they buried themselves as I am concerned it may have caved on top of them?
Check the Safe Food List linked in the care guide. Commercial pellets usually have toxic ingredients so we advise against them.

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Topic author
agentcrabby
Posts: 128
Joined: Fri Jul 29, 2016 2:13 pm

Re: newbie alert!

Post by agentcrabby » Mon Aug 08, 2016 12:00 pm

Does it matter that I can't see where they buried themselves as I am concerned it may have caved on top of them?

agentcrabby

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Rawrgeous
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Location: Nebraska

Re: newbie alert!

Post by Rawrgeous » Mon Aug 08, 2016 12:05 pm

It won't collapse if it's sandcastle consistency. ( you can draw a smiley face with a finger and it stays)
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Topic author
agentcrabby
Posts: 128
Joined: Fri Jul 29, 2016 2:13 pm

Re: newbie alert!

Post by agentcrabby » Mon Aug 08, 2016 12:43 pm

Yes it's a good consistency. I am just concerned that I don't know where they are

There is no visible tunnel. Can they breathe? Will they dig themselves out if can't breathe??

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Rawrgeous
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Re: newbie alert!

Post by Rawrgeous » Mon Aug 08, 2016 1:03 pm

It doesn't matter if you know where they are at. Crabs move once under ground anyways and often backfill their tunnels. They will breathe just fine, they make a molting cave underground, that's why proper substrate is so important. Try not to worry, as it'll likely be a few weeks before you see them again. :)

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Topic author
agentcrabby
Posts: 128
Joined: Fri Jul 29, 2016 2:13 pm

Re: newbie alert!

Post by agentcrabby » Sat Aug 27, 2016 8:12 am

So the two big ones have been buried for 2 weeks. The baby eats no food items. He seems to be picking at a piece if driftwood. Do they eat driftwood?

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KayedeeLove<3
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Re: newbie alert!

Post by KayedeeLove<3 » Sat Aug 27, 2016 8:20 am

agentcrabby wrote:I did the fastest change humanly possible and it paid off! My big crab who was buried is climbing and checking out the tank (at night). At least he isn't buried. So far so good. I think the clean and wetter substrate is what he wanted.
btw, 10gallon as I am a middle class...
I just want them happy!!! so nervous.
Sounds like you did great :)
Glad he's happy and being active for u!

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