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Molting under surface?

Posted: Tue Jan 27, 2015 5:24 pm
by zinxzi
Hello! I am a highly experienced crab owner. I have gone through many processes of molting and distressing, but with my Jumbo Goliath, his case is different. He went down about 2 months ago. I thought he went down for a molt until I spotted the top of his shell from the substrate. I thought he was simply de-stressing and left him be. He is still the same way about 2 months later. He possibly could be molting but I'm not entirely sure.

Help and advice would be very much appreciated.

Thank you! :D

Re: Molting under surface?

Posted: Tue Jan 27, 2015 5:57 pm
by TheLilMommaB
I'm kinda new to hermit crabs yet so I'm not sure what could be going on but these questions help the more experienced crabbers figure out what's going on.

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

14. 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.)?

15. Please describe the emergency situation in detail.

Stay at home mommy to 4 kids (Ana 11, Joseph 10, Alizabeth 6, and Christian 2) 11 purple pincher hermit crabs, 8 cats, 6 guppies, 2 little molly fish, 3 ferrets, 2 parrakets, 2 Oscars, 1 red eared slider, 1 cockatiel, 1 goldfish, 1 veiled chameleon, and 1 bone headed pittbull. And working with The Mid Atlantic Turtle and Tortoise Association to become a slider foster.

Re: Molting under surface?

Posted: Tue Jan 27, 2015 6:50 pm
by zinxzi
I have about 12 inches of substrate in my tank. It Is a mixture of eco- earth and childrens sterilized play sand. I have multiple gauges in my tank for both humidity and temp in all areas of the enclosure. I have a heat lamp + heating pad on the tank. Both fresh and salt water are available (I use a safe, highly recommended conditioner (API brand) and Instant ocean for salt). I change the water every day. I feed them fresh fruits and vegetables along with many assorts of food items from the HCP, along with many calcium based foods (also from HCP). I have had him since November, and he is a purple pincher.
He is currently in the molting tank (20 gallon), although I also have a properly set up 90 gallon which he will be transferred to later when he comes up. Both tanks are glass (aquarium) and are properly set up. I have mesh lids on both (covered by towels so the heat + humidity doesn't escape). I have about 35+ shells (natural) in the tank, all sizes are perfect sizes up for my crabs. I have 9 PP's. I make sure no fumes or chemicals come remotely near the tanks. I do surface cleans about once every weak (just making sure there is no spoiled food or any poop). I do deep cleans once every 6 months (change the substrate, NOT using any chemicals when cleaning, only using hot water). No sponges in the water dish because they collect harmful bacteria. Nothing has been added to the molting tank. I don't disturb the molting tank other than spraying it with chlorinated water for the substrate + humidity. Its not really an emergency, I'm just wondering why he didn't dig all the way down if he is really molting. Hope this helps :D

Re: Molting under surface?

Posted: Tue Jan 27, 2015 7:17 pm
by CallaLily
Is he the only crab in that tank? I personally would wait it out. It's not an unusual amount of time for a jumbo. I agree that him being so shallow is a bit odd but if he's safe from other crabs I really think waiting is the best option. It's possible he didn't have the energy to dig down further....especially if he came from poor conditions or had gone long between molts.

You didn't mention what the temp and humidity are? Your diet looks good but I'm wondering about protein sources? Answering those questions just really helps in making sure we give you the best advice for your situation. :)

Re: Molting under surface?

Posted: Tue Jan 27, 2015 8:13 pm
by zinxzi
There are no other crabs in the tank other than him and another that is molting. My temp is 80 degrees and my humidity stays 80%+. For protein I do feed them meat sometimes but make sure it is changed the next day. Also many other variety of foods (fruit and veggies, ect.) :)

Re: Molting under surface?

Posted: Wed Jan 28, 2015 2:41 am
by singlemomwithcrab
Do you have a small plastic tub like a butter tub you can just place over him to make sure it is dark enough?

Re: Molting under surface?

Posted: Wed Jan 28, 2015 4:40 am
by hermieluv1
If he hasn't moved at all, I would think it would be unlikely that he is molting, don't you? I have never seen a crab stay in one spot for very long. They dig down here, and I see them through a window by the glass, then they are gone again. Since you have been through so many molts, I would say to follow your gut feeling.

Re: Molting under surface?

Posted: Wed Jan 28, 2015 7:33 am
by zinxzi
Yes I have a small tub I can place over him. And also an update on him - I went and checked on him (looking at him from the surface). His shell was much higher up then before. Guessing he may be coming up from whatever he was doing. Molting, distressing, ect. Good sign! :)

Re: Molting under surface?

Posted: Wed Jan 28, 2015 8:01 am
Movement is good! Keep an eye out for more. Hope your big guy is ok!

Crabbers unite!!!

Re: Molting under surface?

Posted: Wed Jan 28, 2015 8:08 am
by CallaLily
I may have misunderstood but I thought he was partially buried? I had a crab that was too weak to dig down very far and he pulled a perfectly healthy molt very shallow under the sub, could still see the top of his shell. I just let him do his thing. ;) As long as he's safe from other crabs, I would not worry at this point.
Just checking. If he were on the surface my advice would be different.