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Is my hermit crab dead?

Please post here if you are having a crab care emergency! Please use a real subject and not just "HELP!" Someone will help you as soon as possible.

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Is my hermit crab dead?

PostAuthor: Thatfranke » Thu Sep 13, 2018 11:34 pm

Hi, I have recently purchased 3 hermit crabs, one pp and two ecuadors. We were preparing for a hurricane evacuation and so I put my hermies in a portable plastic container just to make it easier should we need to take them at a moments notice. We evacuated and since then i haven’t had a chance to give them fresh food, it’s been maybe about 5 days since I last gave them fresh food. I just looked in my crabitat and their was a fishy smell. I panicked and started picking them all up (they were all surface level) and when I got to the purple pincher she wasn’t moving. She was in a little round cactus skeleton like thing and I had to dislodge her from their to get a good look at her. When I did, two of her big legs fell off and she wasn’t moving at all! I tried to lean her forward to see if their was any twitching to see if maybe she was wriggling her skin off but some clear liquid came out. Again, she does smell like fish. Is there any chance that she is alive? I have currently taken her and the cactus skeleton out so I can re examine things in the morning. She is somewhere safe where nothing could get her should she be alive. I have no heating source but the temperature in my house is rarely below 75*. I mist their enclosure every chance I get so the humidity is always very high. I fed her a died of commercial hermit pellets and lettuce. My fear is that she got stuck in the driftwood and couldn’t move. Would she have molted without digging down? I use coconut fibers as my substrate and it is about 4” deep since my crabs are very small. They all dig down sometimes and the pp was no exception. This is such a loss. Is there any chance she is alive? What do I do? I’m not home to have a proper funeral and Hong’s are just messy right now ;(

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Re: Is my hermit crab dead?

PostAuthor: fandt94 » Fri Sep 14, 2018 12:13 am

Oh no! Losing limbs ( from my own short experience) is a sign of extreme stress and again, only in my short term experience, death usually followed. Hopefully someone more experienced will comment. When I have thought they were dead I isolated them, fed little capfuls of FW and SW along with healing foods like calcium, honey and other items until I was sure of their passing which you will know “the smell.” It’s very strong. I’m going to guess the fluid that might have come out of the shell is the water they keep in their shells.
Mom to 3 human boys, 2 dogs - Hemi & Athena, 2 cats - Fat a$$ (realname Spark Plug) & Batman & 5 PP’s - Monstro, Pinkie aka Little Bit, Shellie, other 2 unnamed
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Re: Is my hermit crab dead?

PostAuthor: JoeHermits » Fri Sep 14, 2018 8:25 am

A limp crab that doesn’t move, is dropping limbs upon contact, and smells like fish is likely deceased.

If it were molting it would have dropped its entire exoskeleton at once.

I’m sorry! This must be hard for you.


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