New hermit 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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kellylaree82
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New hermit crab owner

Post by kellylaree82 » Tue Feb 11, 2020 7:21 pm

So I have been a hermit crab owner for almost a year now. I decided to get some after thinking about it for awhile. Its hard to see them in the stores and not want to buy one. I got three and let my three boys name them. Hercules, Bendy, and Mercury are now part of our family. I put a lot of thought and care into these guys. I love watching them. I started with a 10 gallon but upgraded quickly to a 20 gallon. They are still small, in fact Hercules is the smallest one. He's tiny. I'm just curious, if my tank is suitable for them. I see so many others tanks and they seem well done. I've tried making things and it either falls apart or when I change their tank it doesn't fit well. Any suggestions? Or does my tank look suitable for them? They seem pretty happy and active. Also I'm curious about water dishes, I just switched the smaller dishes to larger ones but not real deep because mine are still little. Do they need to fully submerge? Do all crabs like that? Hercules and Bendy are in the tree and Mercury is in the moss pit. ImageImageImageImageImage

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CrabbyLover77
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Re: New hermit crab owner

Post by CrabbyLover77 » Tue Feb 11, 2020 7:42 pm

Hi!
I'm not able to tell by your pic, but yep, your crabbies should be able to fully submerge in their water dishes. Also, the substrate should be a minimum of 6" across the whole tank, or 3x the depth of your biggest crab. It looks like you're using just eco earth, and some people on here do that too. But a lot of people use a 5:1 ratio of play sand and EE, and wet it to sand castle consistancy. It helps keep the shape of their tunnels when they dig, and has less risk of flooding. But again, some use all EE with no problems at all. What do you feed the little guys? I see blueberries but nothing else. They should always have a constant source of protein and calcium in the tank. Variety is key.

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CrabbyLover77
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Re: New hermit crab owner

Post by CrabbyLover77 » Tue Feb 11, 2020 7:43 pm

Ps- You can throw away the sponge in the water dish. They just harbor bacteria and aren't needed.

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-George Bernard Shaw


Topic author
kellylaree82
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Joined: Tue Feb 11, 2020 6:54 pm

Re: New hermit crab owner

Post by kellylaree82 » Tue Feb 11, 2020 7:57 pm

I do just have blueberries in there right now with a little bit of this JurrasiDiet stuff I got from the pet store. Is that okay to give them? I just order a mix of dry things for them to eat. I just recently found out that they should have a variety of things to eat, as I have only been giving them either fruit or vegetables with the JurrasiDiet. I have seen the food list, and been feeding them off of that. I am limited here on what I can get for them. Any suggestions on where I can get more foods for them? How much of a variety should I be feeding them? Also I had no idea that the substrate had to be across the whole tank. I do just use EE for this time. Before I changed I did do the sand but I used the kind that was no good for them so I had to change it out and I just went with only EE.

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CrabbyLover77
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Re: New hermit crab owner

Post by CrabbyLover77 » Tue Feb 11, 2020 8:24 pm

I would chuck the JD food. Many of the food marketed toward hermits in the pet stores aren't hermit safe. Those foods have a lot of preservatives that aren't good for them. For calcium, you can use cuttlebone and/or a dish of calcium powder (egg shells work too). I use both, but my hermits love the powder. That's great you ordered some dry foods for them. I get my dry foods from The Hermit Crab Patch. Hermits can pretty much eat what we eat, just no added seasonings, salt, and sugar. Some great sources of protein are eggs, beef, chicken, turkey, salmon, and tuna. I like to get dried mealworms off Amazon and Pure Bites dog treats (they make freeze dried salmon, beef, lamb, etc and have no other ingredients). Try to buy organic if you can, but I know that's not always posssible. I like to buy the freeze dried fruits for a $1 at the grocery store and then grind them up into powder in my food processor. A great treat is popcorn as long as it's plain flavored and cooked with no butter, oil, or salt (I believe using organic coconut oil is ok though). My hermits also love coconut flakes. I bought a big bag of organic flakes for under $4 and I'm still using it months later.
Yep, the substrate should be deep across the entire tank. Hermits love to dig and tunnel. The deep substrate also keeps the hermits safe from other crabs when they are molting.


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CrabbyLover77
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Re: New hermit crab owner

Post by CrabbyLover77 » Tue Feb 11, 2020 8:26 pm

viewtopic.php?t=92557

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Maddamay32
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Re: New hermit crab owner

Post by Maddamay32 » Tue Feb 11, 2020 8:28 pm

If you're struggling to find a calcium source for them eggshells are pretty easy. I keep a mason jar in my fridge where I put all my eggshells on mornings when I eat breakfast. They get smelly quick but the crabs don't mind
Protein is another food item that needs to be readily available. Pet stores have many dried bugs/shrimp available for cheap. I don't know off the top of my head any meat that's unsafe for crabs (maybe ham?) As long as it's not salted or seasoned. It's easy to pull off small pieces of meat when you're cooking and throw them in the food bowl.
Besides the tips mentioned above I would add having a thermometer and hygrometer is very important. The minimum readings of 75/75 is what's recommended to ensure your crabs are not suffering.

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Topic author
kellylaree82
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Re: New hermit crab owner

Post by kellylaree82 » Tue Feb 11, 2020 8:39 pm

Where can I get cuttlebone or the calcium powder?


Topic author
kellylaree82
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Joined: Tue Feb 11, 2020 6:54 pm

Re: New hermit crab owner

Post by kellylaree82 » Tue Feb 11, 2020 8:42 pm

Maddamay32 wrote:
Tue Feb 11, 2020 8:28 pm
If you're struggling to find a calcium source for them eggshells are pretty easy. I keep a mason jar in my fridge where I put all my eggshells on mornings when I eat breakfast. They get smelly quick but the crabs don't mind Image
Protein is another food item that needs to be readily available. Pet stores have many dried bugs/shrimp available for cheap. I don't know off the top of my head any meat that's unsafe for crabs (maybe ham?) As long as it's not salted or seasoned. It's easy to pull off small pieces of meat when you're cooking and throw them in the food bowl.
Besides the tips mentioned above I would add having a thermometer and hygrometer is very important. The minimum readings of 75/75 is what's recommended to ensure your crabs are not suffering.

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How long can you keep the eggshells? Can they be from raw eggs? So if im cooking chicken and i season the top of it, I can pull some off the bottom and give that to them? Just as long as there is no salt on that area? Or do I need to boil the egg then use the shell? My humidity and temperature are perfect, that I have had no problem with.

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Maddamay32
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Re: New hermit crab owner

Post by Maddamay32 » Tue Feb 11, 2020 8:47 pm

Yeah any area that's not seasoned is safe, cooked or raw. And yes raw eggshell is safe as well, I think the crabs even like it more because it has raw egg on it too lol

You can keep the shells for as long as you want. Crabs are scavengers so rotten food items won't hurt them.....just stink up your house

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Topic author
kellylaree82
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Joined: Tue Feb 11, 2020 6:54 pm

Re: New hermit crab owner

Post by kellylaree82 » Tue Feb 11, 2020 8:49 pm

Maddamay32 wrote:
Tue Feb 11, 2020 8:47 pm
Yeah any area that's not seasoned is safe, cooked or raw. And yes raw eggshell is safe as well, I think the crabs even like it more because it has raw egg on it too lol

You can keep the shells for as long as you want. Crabs are scavengers so rotten food items won't hurt them.....just stink up your house Image

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You can give them raw meat? I have been so worried about feeding them meat after i cooked it.

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CrabbyLover77
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Re: New hermit crab owner

Post by CrabbyLover77 » Tue Feb 11, 2020 8:49 pm

To make my egg shells not smelly, I rinse them out first, and then cook them in the microwave for 1-2 minutes. It helps dry them out. Then I baggie them up and put them in the fridge.
You can find calcium powder and cuttlebone in many pet stores, or on Amazon (that's where I order mine).

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My Pets: 1 Pomeranian, 1 Russian tortoise, fishes/snails(40 gal freshwater aquarium), and 4 hermit crabs.
"Animals are my friends, and I don’t eat my friends".
-George Bernard Shaw

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CrabbyLover77
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Re: New hermit crab owner

Post by CrabbyLover77 » Tue Feb 11, 2020 8:50 pm

https://smile.amazon.com/Zoo-Med-Calciu ... rep&sr=8-3

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"Animals are my friends, and I don’t eat my friends".
-George Bernard Shaw

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CrabbyLover77
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Re: New hermit crab owner

Post by CrabbyLover77 » Tue Feb 11, 2020 8:51 pm

https://smile.amazon.com/Living-World-C ... lrb&sr=8-3

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My Pets: 1 Pomeranian, 1 Russian tortoise, fishes/snails(40 gal freshwater aquarium), and 4 hermit crabs.
"Animals are my friends, and I don’t eat my friends".
-George Bernard Shaw

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Maddamay32
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Re: New hermit crab owner

Post by Maddamay32 » Tue Feb 11, 2020 8:52 pm

kellylaree82 wrote: You can give them raw meat? I have been so worried about feeding them meat after i cooked it.
Yupp I think they like it more raw anyway. That's how they would naturally find it in the wild ya know? Sometimes I'll throw in some raw chicken fat and they go straight for that when the lights go off!
No need to be worried, their little bodies process foods differently then ours.

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9 crabs at the moment "Tarzan, Kermit, Shy guy, Eduardo, Jimbo, Sharkboy, Rosa, Diesel, Treaker"

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