Burying shells

Where we discuss the behavior of our hermit crabs, as in fights, pecking orders, shell swaps, etc. Please post all naked-crab posts in the Emergency forum.
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Hermiesguardian
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Burying shells

Post by Hermiesguardian » Sun May 13, 2018 8:46 pm

I know they sometimes bury their shells. Are we supposed to unbury them? What if they happen to be near or in a tunnel but we don't know?
raising son's dog, Dante. Husky/hound.
Raising daughter's hermit crabs, Shelder, Paras and Derek. Added 2 more of my own (of course) Pete and Stryper. Former mommy to 2 guinea pigs and beloved cat, Nissi

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LadyJinglyJones
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Re: Burying shells

Post by LadyJinglyJones » Sun May 13, 2018 10:39 pm

A crab can generally dig around an obstacle like a buried stone or a shell or root (like in nature).

But if you want those shells (that you paid money for - not those dang lazy, resource squandering, ungrateful crabs!) to be available for wearing, you'll rescue them from the fate of obsolescence in the deep underworld of your tank. :lol:

And tell those crabs that if they want to bury shells, to get a job & buy their own.
"Gaze upon the rolling deep..."
Quince the fat tailed gecko; Amazonian minnows; and now Harry & Luis, Bede & Aster, Chandra & Jace, Pax, & Piccolo, my adopted PPs.
RIP Vegita :(

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Hermiesguardian
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Re: Burying shells

Post by Hermiesguardian » Mon May 14, 2018 12:40 am

LadyJinglyJones wrote:A crab can generally dig around an obstacle like a buried stone or a shell or root (like in nature).

But if you want those shells (that you paid money for - not those dang lazy, resource squandering, ungrateful crabs!) to be available for wearing, you'll rescue them from the fate of obsolescence in the deep underworld of your tank. :lol:

And tell those crabs that if they want to bury shells, to get a job & buy their own.
You're too funny!! It seems like all they do is either poop in or bury ther shells.
raising son's dog, Dante. Husky/hound.
Raising daughter's hermit crabs, Shelder, Paras and Derek. Added 2 more of my own (of course) Pete and Stryper. Former mommy to 2 guinea pigs and beloved cat, Nissi

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Hermiesguardian
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Joined: Sun Oct 15, 2017 10:41 pm

Re: Burying shells

Post by Hermiesguardian » Mon May 14, 2018 10:47 am

One of my crabs dug under a shell. I thought they'd be really good at hide and seek. But then he came up and deposited said shell in that hole. Do they bury them to save for later? Or as a discard? Do you think they're upset when they come back to find their buried shells unburied?
raising son's dog, Dante. Husky/hound.
Raising daughter's hermit crabs, Shelder, Paras and Derek. Added 2 more of my own (of course) Pete and Stryper. Former mommy to 2 guinea pigs and beloved cat, Nissi

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LadyJinglyJones
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Location: The 6ix, Ontario, Canada

Re: Burying shells

Post by LadyJinglyJones » Mon May 14, 2018 11:26 am

Yup, that's crabs all over.

You're most likely to see lots o shell changes when you've either just cleaned & replaced the shells, or added new ones. Keeping them clean will result in more shell action, if you want to see that, but it's also work.

I'm pretty lazy about cleaning shells - though I try to keep at least one of each size that the kids are using in good order incase of a shell theft or a tunneler's shell getting stuck; the four contingency shells live on a dish on the sub & I try to keep them mostly poop and sand free.

Novelty is exciting because in the wild shells are a way rarer commodity (especially in recent decades) so discovering a new one sparks interest.

A better, bigger, lighter shell can mean improved ability to travel inland & access better foraging opportunities (especially for smallish crabs at a certain size: smaller crabs can't really carry enough shell water to make long forays & tend to be found more on and near beaches, but as they grow, crabs will tend to venture further inland).*

*This is true more of clypeatus than a species like straws, which more uniformly are found within a certain distance from the ocean.
"Gaze upon the rolling deep..."
Quince the fat tailed gecko; Amazonian minnows; and now Harry & Luis, Bede & Aster, Chandra & Jace, Pax, & Piccolo, my adopted PPs.
RIP Vegita :(

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LadyJinglyJones
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Re: Burying shells

Post by LadyJinglyJones » Mon May 14, 2018 11:42 am

Hermiesguardian wrote:One of my crabs dug under a shell. I thought they'd be really good at hide and seek. But then he came up and deposited said shell in that hole. Do they bury them to save for later? Or as a discard? Do you think they're upset when they come back to find their buried shells unburied?
I dunno... just from my own (very limited) observation, I don't get the impression that they remember things like squirrels do. Food gets stashed & then ignored (or they've had enough of it, I dunno) and shells that do get buried don't ever seem to get excavated (until I go looking for them).

It doesnt feel like they're deliberately burying shells in my tank, more like they're busy tearing up the sub & the shells are collateral damage. But I haven't done anything to explore the question. And it is an interesting question.
"Gaze upon the rolling deep..."
Quince the fat tailed gecko; Amazonian minnows; and now Harry & Luis, Bede & Aster, Chandra & Jace, Pax, & Piccolo, my adopted PPs.
RIP Vegita :(

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