Soon to be new crab owner

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!
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22pony22
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Joined: Mon Jul 01, 2019 4:41 pm
Location: Southern Ontario

Soon to be new crab owner

Post by 22pony22 » Tue Jul 16, 2019 5:22 pm

Hi, I will soon be a new crab owner.
I plan to get them from PetSmart (only store in my area that sells them- praying they have tiny crabs available). I just finished setting up my "crabitat" I think it looks ok. So, My tank that I have right now is the "portable hermit crab kit" (the only thing I used that actually came with the kit is the sponge- cut into billon pieces). For substrate- I'm using two bags of the "All Living things- Sand/ Soil Mix". I mixed in some "Cypress Mulch" that I bought at PetSmart. I have two silk plants and two hermit crab climbing branches and two hermit crab bowls. I've also got a hygrometer and spray bottle (with conditioner for that bottle) salt water and fresh water conditioner for the bowls and a tiny flower pot for them to hide in. I've also got a bottle of "Probiotic spray" and the blue scooper to remove waste. For food I have the hermit crab pellet food- currently the food isn't in the food dish. I do have the water (salt and fresh) in the bowls though. Heater feels like its "on" I've misted the tank couple of times today since setting it up- Hygrometer is the Thermometer Hygrometer combo- it's dial face. Both are reading 100. I'm assuming that is because it has been so humid in my city lately- Didn't calibrate it and it is stuck on the wall of my tank. I'm going to let the tank sit for couple of weeks. I think I'll get them sometime in August.

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Xenocrab
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Re: Soon to be new crab owner

Post by Xenocrab » Tue Jul 16, 2019 5:26 pm

I suggest getting an accurite digital hydrogenator. Carefully read the care guides and food guides on this site. Also, check out the adoptions link! Adopt, don't shop. I understand that's not always possible, but please try that first. Like I said, these are my suggestions. Be fully educated before you buy/adopt and crabbies.

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5 store bought, 6 rescues and 7 adopted.


Topic author
22pony22
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Joined: Mon Jul 01, 2019 4:41 pm
Location: Southern Ontario

Re: Soon to be new crab owner

Post by 22pony22 » Tue Jul 16, 2019 5:28 pm

I've checked websites for the local adoption agency in my area. They don't have hermit crabs available. I'll read the care guides as well.

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The Crab Maid
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Re: Soon to be new crab owner

Post by The Crab Maid » Tue Jul 16, 2019 7:13 pm

Try drying the meter out, if it drops it's probably fine, if it's stuck at a 100 you need a new one.

Did you try Craigslist for hermit crabs? More and more will start to appear as people regret their spontaneous beach purchases.
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Topic author
22pony22
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Joined: Mon Jul 01, 2019 4:41 pm
Location: Southern Ontario

Re: Soon to be new crab owner

Post by 22pony22 » Tue Jul 16, 2019 7:25 pm

I've got the all living things combination one- The % is closer to 80 now the Temp is still on 100. The heater is directly behind it but doesn't feel overly warm- it is the "Zoo Med Hermit Crab Heater".

the only ads on craiglist is for dog walking. I'm from Southern Ontario Canada

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curlysister
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Re: Soon to be new crab owner

Post by curlysister » Tue Jul 16, 2019 7:25 pm

Your substrate is NOT safe for hermit crabs. Many products marketed for hermit crabs aren't actually safe for them. The All Living Things sand and soil mix is a mixture of calcium sand and eco earth - calcium sand will cake solid when moistened and will kill crabs. You need to get play sand and mix it with EE/ coco fiber. Is Cypress wood an ever green? I would not trust it, either. Just play sand and EE.
How big is the tank? If it is what I am thinking of, it is too small. Your substrate will need to be at least 6 inches deep, or 3 times as deep as your largest crab. There probably isn't enough room for that in the container. Water dishes need to be deep enough that crabs can fully submerge but also have a way to climb out.
You don't need any sponges - they just grow bacteria.
Hermit crab pellets are not considered appropriate food.
What brand of dechlorinator and salt are you using? You will need a dechlorinator such as Prime, and a marine salt such as Instant Ocean. Again, many that are marketed for crabs aren't actually safe or appropriate.
100 is too hot for hermit crabs. You need to calibrate your hygrometer. Digital hygrometer/ thermometers are considered more accurate than analog.
Personally, I don't think you have a set-up that is ready for crabs. Go to the care sheets and read through them, before you get any crabs. All the info you need to have healthy happy crabs is in the care sheets. Then if you have questions, feel free to ask!
"If there are no dogs in Heaven, then when I die I want to go where they went." -Will Rogers


Topic author
22pony22
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Joined: Mon Jul 01, 2019 4:41 pm
Location: Southern Ontario

Re: Soon to be new crab owner

Post by 22pony22 » Tue Jul 16, 2019 7:50 pm

I'm going to give this sand a try. Next time I buy substrate I'll try want you suggested. Thanks.
The tank is 26 cm X 15.2 cm X 19 cm and my substrate is 6cm deep I think. I plan to buy tiny crabs from my PetSmart. I am using 2 all living things brown dishes that look like they are kidney bean shaped. The sponge is so the tiny crabs can get out of the bowl. I've read the ingredients and compaired it to the guides- I don't see any of the bad things listed in the ingredient list. I'm using All Living things salt water and fresh water condtioners for the bowls and Repti Safe for the spray bottle. I'm going to calibrate my Hygrometer tomorrow.

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Motörcrab
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Re: Soon to be new crab owner

Post by Motörcrab » Tue Jul 16, 2019 8:24 pm

Welcome to the HCA. The first thing you will learn on her is that most caresheets and items like food, substrate, and waters marketed for hermit crabs in pet stores are actually unsafe for them. Most stores see crabs as a cheap disposable pet. A parent will spend $50 on the kit for their kids first pet. The stores all say they are easy to care for. Crabs actually require a lot more care and supplies than what most stores will say. A properly set up crabitat with supplies can easily reach over $100. They can be fun and entertaining pets in the proper conditions and can out live dogs and cats!

Be sure to read through the care guides, especially substrate, heating, food, and water. There is a ton of information packed into them. The link to them can be found here.
http://www.hermitcrabassociation.com/ph ... .php?f=120

I'll address a few of the potential issues I see with your set up.

Be sure the sand you have is not this type.
https://www.petsmart.com/reptile/substr ... 15133.html
Calcium sand can get like concrete and stick to the inside of their shell potentially killing them. It can also be dyed to many colors. That too can hurt them. Your best and cheaper approach is to purchase playsand at a hardware store. It is safe and natural.

I'm not sure if Cypress mulch is safe since it is in the pine family.

Prime treated tap water is safe for crabs. The bottled Hermit Crab Salt Water is way over priced and lacks many of the natural minerals and elements they require. For the price of two bottles you can purchase a small box on Instant Ocean and make 10 gallons of salt water!

The hermit crab pellets are usually full of chemicals that are harmful to crabs even though they are marketed for their use. If you check out the link in my signature it will direct you to a ton of hermit crab food stores online. Several are members on here.

We had those little black ZooMed gauges. We never had much luck with them. I'm guessing the probe got wet while misting the tank. That will kill one of them in no time. As Xenocrab said Acurite gauges are around the same price and work great.

I can't really say anything about purchasing crabs. I try not to but always feel bad when I see one in a way to small shell or missing limbs. I will say that we have had way better success with rescued and adopted crabs compared to store purchases. I bet it is close to a 50/50 chance of a store purchased crab surviving. With our rescued and adopted guys we are closer to 90% survival rate.
Help Improve Our Resources Section (weblinks)
http://www.hermitcrabassociation.com/ph ... 2&t=119315

Once we get more links the directors will update the resources in a few weeks. Thanks!

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Motörcrab
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Re: Soon to be new crab owner

Post by Motörcrab » Tue Jul 16, 2019 8:25 pm

I see curlysister posted as I was typing my novel!
Help Improve Our Resources Section (weblinks)
http://www.hermitcrabassociation.com/ph ... 2&t=119315

Once we get more links the directors will update the resources in a few weeks. Thanks!

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curlysister
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Re: Soon to be new crab owner

Post by curlysister » Tue Jul 16, 2019 10:13 pm

That's okay Motor! It's good that more than one of us is giving the same advice.
Your dechlorinator and salt are not proper for crabs. Your tank is too small for any more than a couple of very very tiny crabs. If they survive and grow, you will need a larger tank very soon. Sponges will grow bacteria, you can use a couple of stones or shells in the water, or many of us use craft mesh. Your substrate has the potential to kill your crabs, and is definitely not recommended.
22Pony, we want to see your crabs survive and thrive. You don't have to listen to any of our advice, but unfortunately, they will not have much of a chance with your set up and products. I really hope you take our advice and make some changes before you bring any crabs home.
"If there are no dogs in Heaven, then when I die I want to go where they went." -Will Rogers


crabby33
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Re: Soon to be new crab owner

Post by crabby33 » Wed Jul 24, 2019 9:22 pm

Motorcrab, I agree that Cypress is in the pine family. But Taxodium spp. is not an evergreen. My mom has them and they drop their leaves every year. It’s a deciduous conifer. I just double checked the safe and unsafe list. It’s on neither one of them. It’s not on CSJ’s safe and unsafe list either.

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