Female Crabs More Common Than Male Crabs?

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jonathon1989
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Female Crabs More Common Than Male Crabs?

Post by jonathon1989 » Sun Jan 05, 2020 7:41 pm

The majority of hermit crabs Ive owned throughout my life have always been female. Is it a common occurrence in the wild that females out outnunber the males?


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Re: Female Crabs More Common Than Male Crabs?

Post by Motörcrab » Sun Jan 05, 2020 10:42 pm

They can actually change sex. I don't think anyone knows for sure why or how they change. My thoughts are it could be something similar to turtles being incubated before they hatch. A specific temperature range makes them male otherwise they are female. With crabs I can possibly be similar with their molting.

The only ones I I ever tried to sex were my strawberries. Out of my six they were evenly split 3m, 3f. Last year I was lucky enough to have two batches of eggs with them from two of the females. I didn't check them for a while to see if they changed.
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Re: Female Crabs More Common Than Male Crabs?

Post by wodesorel » Mon Jan 06, 2020 11:05 am

I always had a majority of males, but I had a bunch of big crabs! Out of 11 true jumbo over the years, only one had gonopores. None of my ladies got bigger than large.
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Re: Female Crabs More Common Than Male Crabs?

Post by DevilNDisguise » Mon Jan 06, 2020 12:25 pm

I've had over a dozen hermits since I started crabbing (down to 11 now) and a majority of them have always been female. It's been awhile since I've gone through and sexed everyone, and my smaller ones definitely give me a harder time, but my guesstimate from memory says I probably have about 2-3 males out of the 11.

Though there was one time one of my bigger crabs, I had thought they were female but when I sexed them at a later date, they were male. Was never sure if it had actually been a different crab or what, so it's very interesting what Motörcrab mentioned. I've read before something about them changing their sex, but didn't know if it was true.
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Re: Female Crabs More Common Than Male Crabs?

Post by wodesorel » Mon Jan 06, 2020 6:17 pm

It is true! I've had a few that I know changed over. There are also peer reviewed journal papers studying intersex hermits.
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Re: Female Crabs More Common Than Male Crabs?

Post by Motörcrab » Mon Jan 06, 2020 8:40 pm

It would be an interesting thing to track. I have seen one crab owner has been keeping track of her crabs by the patterns of dots on their big Pinchers. I forget the scientific name. But track the patterns on the pinchers, along with tank conditions and molts and see what happens over several years.

We are going to attempt to sex the babies we got from Mary with the next quarterly check in. They will be really interesting to monitor to see what they do their entire life.
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