Buried crab

For topics relating to crab care that do not fit into the other categories.
Post Reply

Topic author
Randomperson428
Posts: 17
Joined: Wed Nov 15, 2017 8:35 am
Location: NH

Buried crab

Post by Randomperson428 » Tue Dec 11, 2018 1:34 pm

So one of my Hermies has been attacking the other for her shell so I separated them in two tanks (I did try to buy a bunch more shells for him but he wasn’t interested in them). It was fine for the first two weeks, but after that the aggressor started burying himself in a corner opposite the heater. He doesn’t eat anything, he doesn’t walk around. I’m worried he might be lonely or sick. Any advice?

Thanks!

- Jess

User avatar

Hermiesguardian
Posts: 2563
Joined: Sun Oct 15, 2017 10:41 pm

Re: Buried crab

Post by Hermiesguardian » Tue Dec 11, 2018 2:39 pm

Can you fill out the emergency template? Maybe there's something about their conditions that can be corrected and help the situation. What does the attack look like?
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


Topic author
Randomperson428
Posts: 17
Joined: Wed Nov 15, 2017 8:35 am
Location: NH

Re: Buried crab

Post by Randomperson428 » Tue Dec 11, 2018 4:30 pm

I will once I get home.

Thanks!

- Jess

User avatar

Hermiesguardian
Posts: 2563
Joined: Sun Oct 15, 2017 10:41 pm

Re: Buried crab

Post by Hermiesguardian » Tue Dec 11, 2018 4:47 pm

Randomperson428 wrote:I will once I get home.

Thanks!

- Jess
You're welcome!
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


Topic author
Randomperson428
Posts: 17
Joined: Wed Nov 15, 2017 8:35 am
Location: NH

Re: Buried crab

Post by Randomperson428 » Wed Dec 12, 2018 1:09 am

Sorry for the late update! I've been all over the place with finals...

1. I use coconut fiber substrate and it's about five inches deep. I try to keep the substrate consistency similar to that of coffee grounds; moist enough to ball up and have it hold its form.

2. I have gauges in the tank in the upper corner of the tank, normally reading at about 75 degrees f, while I try to keep humidity at about 75-80%.

3. I use a 20 gallon tank heater on the bottom of the tank, off-center to the right.

4. I've got both salt and fresh water in my tank. Rather than mixing the salt water, I simply purchase it from the pet store when I grab all my other items.

5. I feel my crab the general diet and fruit diet from the hermit crab patch and it is replaced every other day unless there's a reason to replace it daily.

6. I've had this crab for about a year and a half. He's a purple pincher.

7. My crab molted back in October, around the same time as he had the year before.

8. I've got him in a 20 gallon tank with a mesh top.

9. He's the only one in the tank right now and he's about the size of a gold ball, shell included.

10. I keep upwards of ten extra shells in the tank. All are varying in size, color and shape.

11. I keep chemicals as far away from my crab tanks as possible.

12. I clean the tanks monthly. I dip everything into hot water and clean each item with a cloth, and then clean the tanks with hot water before putting anything back inside.

13. I do not use sponges anymore.

14. I have not added anything recently.

15. I don't have a regular schedule for them. I try to be as hands off as possible because I've got an interested cat and a nippy puppy around at almost all times.

16. Jabba would regularly attack Blu for her shell, at least that's what I figured was going on. He would stick his legs inside her shell and she would start yelling at him. I was always able to separate them before anything bad happened, but now they both live on their own. Blu seems absolutely fine; she's acting just as she did in the other tank with Jabba. Jabba, though, has only buried himself since she left. I haven't noticed him eating, or even moving for that matter. He is still alive; I checked a couple days ago to make sure he was around and he poked out to say hi. He didn't smell fishy and didn't appear to be anything except a little lethargic, which I guessed was because he was so far away from the heater. I tried placing him over top the heated but he buried the next day and I'm not sure where he is right now. I'm almost positive he's in the same corner, but I'd have to dig for him again.

Hope this helps!

- Jess

Edit: I'm worried that if I try to pick up another friend for him, he might just attack them for their shell too. No stores around my area seem to carry a crab that might be smaller than him, but that might also be a target for him too. I'm just not sure... His past tank mate was much smaller than himself and they got along fine. There was never any fighting. When Blu was brought into the tank, he started getting into little pushing fights and then eventually shell fights after he molted.

Blu is not the same species as him. I was wondering if that might be part of the issue? I don't know why it would be, but I suppose it's all I have to work with right now.

User avatar

Hermiesguardian
Posts: 2563
Joined: Sun Oct 15, 2017 10:41 pm

Re: Buried crab

Post by Hermiesguardian » Wed Dec 12, 2018 2:37 am

Randomperson428 wrote:Sorry for the late update! I've been all over the place with finals...

1. I use coconut fiber substrate and it's about five inches deep. I try to keep the substrate consistency similar to that of coffee grounds; moist enough to ball up and have it hold its form.

a mixture of sand and ee stay moist longer than just ee. It also needs to be a minimum of 6" or 3x the height of your biggest crab. Whichever is deeper wins.

2. I have gauges in the tank in the upper corner of the tank, normally reading at about 75 degrees f, while I try to keep humidity at about 75-80%.

do you use analog gauges? Those are really inaccurate. Digital is best. A good inexpensive one is Accurite

3. I use a 20 gallon tank heater on the bottom of the tank, off-center to the right.

even though they are called under tank heaters they shouldn't go under the tank. Not only is it a fire hazard because of the amount of substrate but it can cook the crabs. It should go along tge back or side, on the putside, from the top of the substrate up. You want to heat the air. Not the substrate.

4. I've got both salt and fresh water in my tank. Rather than mixing the salt water, I simply purchase it from the pet store when I grab all my other items.

most items marketed for hermit crabs are inadequate or harmful to them. The best dechlorinator is Prime. And the recommended salt is Instant Ocean, to be mixed in the dechlorinated water.

5. I feel my crab the general diet and fruit diet from the hermit crab patch and it is replaced every other day unless there's a reason to replace it daily.

make sure they are getting plenty of protein and calcium.

6. I've had this crab for about a year and a half. He's a purple pincher.

7. My crab molted back in October, around the same time as he had the year before.

8. I've got him in a 20 gallon tank with a mesh top.

the mesh lid must be sealed to keep in humidity. You can tape saran wrap to the entire lid. They will get air when you feed them.

9. He's the only one in the tank right now and he's about the size of a gold ball, shell included.

10. I keep upwards of ten extra shells in the tank. All are varying in size, color and shape.

11. I keep chemicals as far away from my crab tanks as possible.

12. I clean the tanks monthly. I dip everything into hot water and clean each item with a cloth, and then clean the tanks with hot water before putting anything back inside.

the tank needs only spot cleaning. Unless there's a flood or bacterial bloom there's no need to deep clean the tank.

13. I do not use sponges anymore.

14. I have not added anything recently.

15. I don't have a regular schedule for them. I try to be as hands off as possible because I've got an interested cat and a nippy puppy around at almost all times.

16. Jabba would regularly attack Blu for her shell, at least that's what I figured was going on. He would stick his legs inside her shell and she would start yelling at him. I was always able to separate them before anything bad happened, but now they both live on their own. Blu seems absolutely fine; she's acting just as she did in the other tank with Jabba. Jabba, though, has only buried himself since she left. I haven't noticed him eating, or even moving for that matter. He is still alive; I checked a couple days ago to make sure he was around and he poked out to say hi. He didn't smell fishy and didn't appear to be anything except a little lethargic, which I guessed was because he was so far away from the heater. I tried placing him over top the heated but he buried the next day and I'm not sure where he is right now. I'm almost positive he's in the same corner, but I'd have to dig for him again.

Hope this helps!

- Jess

Edit: I'm worried that if I try to pick up another friend for him, he might just attack them for their shell too. No stores around my area seem to carry a crab that might be smaller than him, but that might also be a target for him too. I'm just not sure... His past tank mate was much smaller than himself and they got along fine. There was never any fighting. When Blu was brought into the tank, he started getting into little pushing fights and then eventually shell fights after he molted.

Blu is not the same species as him. I was wondering if that might be part of the issue? I don't know why it would be, but I suppose it's all I have to work with right now.
what species is Blu? If he's an E, they need deeper substrate. About 10".
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


Topic author
Randomperson428
Posts: 17
Joined: Wed Nov 15, 2017 8:35 am
Location: NH

Re: Buried crab

Post by Randomperson428 » Thu Dec 13, 2018 7:20 pm

Blu is an E. I'll make sure to give her some deeper substrate in her tank.

I forgot to mention that I actually do mix some calcium sand in with my ee. Not a lot, but just enough to provide some difference in the substrate.

I'll try those improvements on Jabba's tank though. Hopefully it'll coax him out of hiding...

Thanks!

- Jess

User avatar

Hermiesguardian
Posts: 2563
Joined: Sun Oct 15, 2017 10:41 pm

Re: Buried crab

Post by Hermiesguardian » Thu Dec 13, 2018 9:38 pm

Randomperson428 wrote:Blu is an E. I'll make sure to give her some deeper substrate in her tank.

I forgot to mention that I actually do mix some calcium sand in with my ee. Not a lot, but just enough to provide some difference in the substrate.

I'll try those improvements on Jabba's tank though. Hopefully it'll coax him out of hiding...

Thanks!

- Jess
Calcium sand isn't good for crabs. When it gets wet it can harden like cement. It can happen inside their shells. Playsand and ee mixed is the best.
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


Topic author
Randomperson428
Posts: 17
Joined: Wed Nov 15, 2017 8:35 am
Location: NH

Re: Buried crab

Post by Randomperson428 » Sun Dec 16, 2018 1:42 am

I've heard that calcium sand is bad for them, but it's also good for conducting heat. I put a very small amount in the EE simply for that reason. It shouldn't be enough to clump in their shells and harden.

Also, I was looking for him tonight and found him molting again. This happened earlier with Blu; she molted about a month after her first molt with me. Jabba molted last year during October, then this year at the beginning of November, and now again. Hopefully after his molt he'll be up and around a little more often.

- Jess

User avatar

Hermiesguardian
Posts: 2563
Joined: Sun Oct 15, 2017 10:41 pm

Re: Buried crab

Post by Hermiesguardian » Sun Dec 16, 2018 9:54 am

Randomperson428 wrote:I've heard that calcium sand is bad for them, but it's also good for conducting heat. I put a very small amount in the EE simply for that reason. It shouldn't be enough to clump in their shells and harden.

Also, I was looking for him tonight and found him molting again. This happened earlier with Blu; she molted about a month after her first molt with me. Jabba molted last year during October, then this year at the beginning of November, and now again. Hopefully after his molt he'll be up and around a little more often.

- Jess
Yes in small amounts some say calci sand is ok. When you say you looked for him and found him, does that mean you dug him up? Rule #1 in crabbing is to never dig for them unless there's a flood or bacterial bloom.
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


Topic author
Randomperson428
Posts: 17
Joined: Wed Nov 15, 2017 8:35 am
Location: NH

Re: Buried crab

Post by Randomperson428 » Fri Dec 21, 2018 9:21 am

Sorry for the late reply!

Yes I did dig for him. It’s not something I normally do, but when I haven’t seen one of them for a long period of time I try to at least locate them just to be sure they they’re still alive.

- Jess

User avatar

Hermiesguardian
Posts: 2563
Joined: Sun Oct 15, 2017 10:41 pm

Re: Buried crab

Post by Hermiesguardian » Fri Dec 21, 2018 1:00 pm

Randomperson428 wrote:Sorry for the late reply!

Yes I did dig for him. It’s not something I normally do, but when I haven’t seen one of them for a long period of time I try to at least locate them just to be sure they they’re still alive.

- Jess
If you unbury them you cannot rebury them. They will suffocate. And if they are mid molt it can have dire concequences. If they are buried for longer than 8 months, or if there's a flood or bacterial bloom they can be dug up.
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


Topic author
Randomperson428
Posts: 17
Joined: Wed Nov 15, 2017 8:35 am
Location: NH

Re: Buried crab

Post by Randomperson428 » Thu Dec 27, 2018 9:47 pm

I didn't rebury him. I simply placed him back where I found him. The ground is open above him, so I covered it with a couple fake plants to give him more darkness. I was not expecting to find him molting a second time after having just finished it.

As far as I'm aware, he's doing fine right now. He hasn't left the hole he's molting in yet but his tank is being kept as close to perfect as possible.

Thank you for your comments on my thread; I get so nervous about my little guys sometimes...

- Jess

Post Reply