Brand new crab owner & 2 questions

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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NewHermitCrabMom
Posts: 2
Joined: Fri Jul 17, 2020 1:25 pm

Brand new crab owner & 2 questions

Post by NewHermitCrabMom » Fri Jul 17, 2020 1:35 pm

Hi folks - I thought adopting a few hermit crabs from some neighbors moving cross country would be a good covid summer project for my kids (the learning about how to take care of hermit crabs). Well, little did I realize how poorly these crabs had been cared for, so I'm trying to remedy that. I really don't want them to die!

We're waiting for the eco earth to arrive, but we now have them set up in 6 inches of play sand from Home Depot, wet with dechlorinated salt water. I think the sand is the appropriate sandcastle wetness, but the wet sand sticks to them, not huge chunks, but grains of sand seem to always be on their shell and on their legs. Is that okay? It's the same way if I put my hand on the sand, my hand has grains on it.

My second question is when to worry about them not eating. We've had them for about a week and a half although we've only switched them off pellet food 4 days ago (we're slowly learning!). The problem is that it doesn't seem like they are eating. They aren't super active but they do walk around and I saw one take a bath (but only once).

We're not doing something right. Heater and gauges will arrive on Sunday, so that might be it. They are in the warmest room in our house and the tank has condensation. But without knowing the exact temp/humidity, anything else I can do while we wait? (We have to fresh water and salt water bowls, logs for climbing, an assortment of non-painted shells)

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asiankanye
Posts: 200
Joined: Thu Apr 02, 2020 6:00 pm
Location: North Carolina

Re: Brand new crab owner & 2 questions

Post by asiankanye » Fri Jul 17, 2020 1:39 pm

They might be stressed from moving to a different tank, even if it’s a better tank.

For question 1, yes that is fine. For question 2, it may seem like they’re eating nothing at times because of how little their mouths are.


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CombatMist
Posts: 48
Joined: Thu Jul 16, 2020 12:53 pm
Location: Utah

Re: Brand new crab owner & 2 questions

Post by CombatMist » Tue Jul 21, 2020 3:24 pm

Welcome fellow new crabbers

1. Sounds ok. Sand will not hold moisture as well as other things and start to dry. No worries. Ya coconut fiber is great. Doesnt stick and much and retains moisture.
2. I worried same thing for weeks. Didnt actually see them eat for the first few weeks and their food was disturbed but not like 1/2 gone making it hard to tell if they were eating. See if food and water dishes are disturbed. Moved food around, sand in it, less, tiny amounts out side of food dish.

Foods they really like they may like a squirrel carry it off and bury it for later or take it with them to hide. I regularly see tiny crumbs of coconut and banana chip near hiding spots. As exto therms they dont need to eat 3 times a day like we do. They are nocturnal and probably coming out at night.

Watch a video of crabs eating. They eat small pieces slowly. I've only seen mine eating a few times in a few months. If they are standing on food dish high chance they are eating. Unlike a dog they dont devour it putting as much in their mouth as possible. They might be eating size of ball of ball point pen.
Craber since (december 2019)
5 pps, 1 successful molt 🥳
20 gallon long


Topic author
NewHermitCrabMom
Posts: 2
Joined: Fri Jul 17, 2020 1:25 pm

Re: Brand new crab owner & 2 questions

Post by NewHermitCrabMom » Thu Jul 23, 2020 12:25 pm

Thank you both very much!

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CombatMist
Posts: 48
Joined: Thu Jul 16, 2020 12:53 pm
Location: Utah

Re: Brand new crab owner & 2 questions

Post by CombatMist » Thu Jul 23, 2020 1:24 pm

Yep glad to help.

Crabs for most people are very different from cat, dog, bird or fish.

How do you eat an elephant?
One bite at a time!

It can be alot to take it. Just take in 1 piece at a time.
Craber since (december 2019)
5 pps, 1 successful molt 🥳
20 gallon long

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