Where to post and/or get advice about your molting hermit crab(s). Includes pre-molting, molting, and post-molting issues.
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What can I do? I was a dummy and dug up both my crabs because I found broken shells/exoskeleton littered about and thought one had killed the other. To my great relief and surprise they were both alive, but the one had already stated molting, which I had no idea about until the next day when his skin was off. The other crab stole his shell, and I put more in for him but he is pretty weak still. Did I just kill my crab? I isolated him (bit late I know) in hopes he will pull through, and he did heave himself up to one of the shells...but didn't crawl in.
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I'm sorry your having troubles but we are here to help.First the freshly molted hermitcrab is going to be severely weakened due to the molt but being disturbed during this delicate process adds extra challenges that most hermitcrabs in this position don't find easy to overcome.When a hermitcrab molts or sheds its old exo it actually becomes paralyzed for up to three days afterward to prevent it from moving before it has hardened properly thus preventing exoskeleton damage.This paralysis causes the crab to be in a very weakened state when it does finally emerge from it, your crab was likely disturbed during this phase of the re-hardening portion of the molt and as such doesn't have the physical resources to be able to do much and its times like this when the crab is subject to succumbing to exhaustion and giving up the fight as its literally running on fumes and just can't struggle anymore.The only thing you can do is keep the iso warm, humid and dimly lit for the next week or two.The crab wont be interested in eating anything at this point so offering regular foods is likely to be a waste.You can try putting some raw or organic honey in a bottle cap and placing it right in front of the crab the honey is an natural antibacterial/antimicrobial substance and is an easy to eat high energy food that can help a sick or injured hermitcrab pull through.While digging up burrowed hermitcrabs is generally known in the crabbing community to be a bad thing and to be avoided at all costs not many people know not to do it so this is not your fault as you did not know any better so don't blame yourself if the crab does happen to pass.If you have any other questions please feel free to ask.
Hi I have autism so I tend to answer questions very directly and with little emotion so please don't think I'm being rude.
Thank you for your reply, Crabber85! I am SO happy to report that he is still hanging in there, and last night squeezed himself into a shell that is too small but I am happy he is trying. He is still quite weak, but was working on his exoskeleton when I checked on him this morning so I think he will pull through! Our local pet shop doesn't have big shells in stock so I have ordered some online and am sure he will be glad when they arrive! His buddy ate a lot of his exoskeleton when he stole his shell so I have scrambled eggs and wheat germ and raw honey available for him, as well as his usual food.