Buried Crab

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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arw_132
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Location: Fl

Buried Crab

Post by arw_132 » Tue Jun 16, 2020 1:35 pm

Hello everyone!

I had some issues with mold in my crabitat and, since none of my crabs were buried, I removed all the substrate. I had one brick of eco earth on hand as well as some extra sand which amounted to about three inches of substrate (mostly eco earth). I immediately placed an amazon order for more sand, however, one of my crabs buried himself in the shallow substrate while I was waiting for it to arrive. He was directly under the water dish which formed the 'ceiling' of his little cave while the bottom of the tank served as the floor.

This was three weeks ago and he hasn't come up yet. I checked on him once a few days ago because the tank had a fishy smell to it and I was worried he died; luckily he is still alive and the smell was coming from a piece of hidden shrimp tail lol. He hasn't molted and I am worried that he is putting it off because the substrate conditions are not ideal. I have the new sand and I wanted to wait until he came back up to add it so that I wouldn't disturb him. My other crabs are trying to dig down to him and I don't want him to continue to put off the molt if that is what he buried himself to do.

I surrounded the water dish with shells to make it more difficult for the other crabs to bother him.

Will he be able to molt in the shallow substrate? I don't want him to put it off until it is fatal but I don't want to disturb him to add the rest of the sand either.

Any advice is very much appreciated!!

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FJrocks003
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Re: Buried Crab

Post by FJrocks003 » Tue Jun 16, 2020 3:45 pm

I think that the reason he hasn't molted is because of you checking on him. He could be stressed out and you shouldn't disturb him. I wouldn't surround him when shells either because that could block his path up, just leaving him be and in a couple of months he should be back to normal. Also ust incase there is something wrong would you mind filling this out (just copy and paste it).

1. What kind of substrate is used in your tank and how deep is it?


2. Do you have gauges in the tank to measure temperature and humidity? If so, where are they located and what temperature and humidity do they usually read?


3. Is a heat source used in the tank? If so, what?


4. What types of water are available (fresh or salt) and how is the water treated (what brands of dechlorinator or salt mix and what ratio is used to mix it)?


5. What kinds of food do you feed and how often is it replaced?


6. How long have you had the crab and what species is it, if known?


7. Has your crab molted, and how long ago did it happen?


8. What type of housing are the crabs kept in, what size is it and what kind of lid is on the housing?


9. How many crabs are in the tank and about how large are they?


10. How many extra shells are usually kept in the tank, if any?


11. Have there been any fumes or chemicals near the crabitat recently?


12. How often do you clean the tank and how?


13. Are sponges used in the water dish? If so, how are they cleaned?


14. Has anything new been added to your crabitat recently?


15. Is there any other information you would like to share that might be helpful (anything that is regularly part of your crab care, playtime, bathing, etc.)?
Proud owner of two snakes, one dog, too many fish, and 3 hermit crabs.

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FJrocks003
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Re: Buried Crab

Post by FJrocks003 » Tue Jun 16, 2020 3:46 pm

Also, welcome to Hermit Crab Association!
Proud owner of two snakes, one dog, too many fish, and 3 hermit crabs.

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JoeHermits
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Re: Buried Crab

Post by JoeHermits » Tue Jun 16, 2020 4:03 pm

Yes, molting is still possible, but a healthy crab should be able to put off a molt for a few months safely.

It sounds like there’s not enough substrate to form a full cavern, so you’ll have to remove him to add more substrate so he doesn’t get buried. An iso tank may be necessary here.


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Topic author
arw_132
Posts: 4
Joined: Tue Jun 16, 2020 10:03 am
Location: Fl

Re: Buried Crab

Post by arw_132 » Tue Jun 16, 2020 5:47 pm

1. What kind of substrate is used in your tank and how deep is it?

Eco earth and sand - at the moment it is about 3 inches due to the buried crab but it is usually twice that

2. Do you have gauges in the tank to measure temperature and humidity? If so, where are they located, and what temperature and humidity do they usually read?
I have a therm pro digital hygrometer/thermometer. The temp is usually low-mid 80s (F) and the humidity is usually 76-80%

3. Is a heat source used in the tank? If so, what?
There is an under tank heater on one side of the tank

4. What types of water are available (fresh or salt) and how is the water treated (what brands of dechlorinator or salt mix and what ratio is used to mix it)?
Fresh and saltwater - I use distilled water and instant ocean mixed according to the directions on the package.

5. What kinds of food do you feed and how often is it replaced?

I feed fresh fruit and veg along with some protein and nuts (I go by the hermit crab patch's food guides). They get powdered eggshells on their food as well. The food is changed every day to every few days depending on how quickly the food will spoil.

6. How long have you had the crab and what species is it, if known?
7 years and he is a purple pincher.

7. Has your crab molted, and how long ago did it happen?
Yes, his last molt was about 6 months ago

8. What type of housing are the crabs kept in, what size is it and what kind of lid is on the housing?

24x12x16 inch glass tank with a terrarium lid that I cover in plastic wrap for humidity

9. How many crabs are in the tank and about how large are they?

3 crabs about the size of a golf ball

10. How many extra shells are usually kept in the tank, if any?

10 extra shells in the tank but I have a bin of others that I switch out from time to time

11. Have there been any fumes or chemicals near the crabitat recently?

No, but I use lemon juice and vinegar to control ants on the wall behind the tank occasionally.

12. How often do you clean the tank and how?

Every day - clean out food, scrub dishes, and change the water, scoop poo and food from the substrate

Every month - boil dishes, plants, and shells, wipe the glass with a clean cloth, change the moss

Every year - change all substrate

13. Are sponges used in the water dish? If so, how are they cleaned?

There are no sponges in the water dish. I use flat glass beads in the dishes.

14. Has anything new been added to your crabitat recently?

Not within the last 4 months. Before then I added some cholla wood logs.

15. Is there any other information you would like to share that might be helpful (anything that is regularly part of your crab care, playtime, bathing, etc.)?

The crab that is buried right now lost his big claw a few months ago and is in the process of regrowing it. At this stage, it is about a 1cm long and translucent.
Also, thank you for the kind welcome!


Topic author
arw_132
Posts: 4
Joined: Tue Jun 16, 2020 10:03 am
Location: Fl

Re: Buried Crab

Post by arw_132 » Wed Jun 17, 2020 11:07 am

JoeHermits wrote:
Tue Jun 16, 2020 4:03 pm
Yes, molting is still possible, but a healthy crab should be able to put off a molt for a few months safely.

It sounds like there’s not enough substrate to form a full cavern, so you’ll have to remove him to add more substrate so he doesn’t get buried. An iso tank may be necessary here.


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Thanks for the advice! How should I go about removing him? Will he still be able to dig down and molt in the iso tank or will moving him cause too much stress? Are there any specific ways I can make the iso tank less stressful for him?
I'm just worried about causing him harm. Thank you again! :)

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JoeHermits
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Re: Buried Crab

Post by JoeHermits » Wed Jun 17, 2020 11:21 am

You can just pick him up. A short period of handling won’t stress him to the point of harm.

If he hasn’t already molted then he will be able to dig, assuming you have enough substrate in the iso tank. Since he’ll be the only one in there twice his height will be deep enough.

If he either has already molted or you don’t have enough substrate than a hide for darkness will suffice.


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Topic author
arw_132
Posts: 4
Joined: Tue Jun 16, 2020 10:03 am
Location: Fl

Re: Buried Crab

Post by arw_132 » Thu Jun 18, 2020 1:23 pm

JoeHermits wrote:
Wed Jun 17, 2020 11:21 am
You can just pick him up. A short period of handling won’t stress him to the point of harm.

If he hasn’t already molted then he will be able to dig, assuming you have enough substrate in the iso tank. Since he’ll be the only one in there twice his height will be deep enough.

If he either has already molted or you don’t have enough substrate than a hide for darkness will suffice.


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Thank you so much! He is all settled in. Your advice was very helpful! :crabbigsmile:

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