Tan (rather than deep red), claw tips missing, and flooding

Please post here if you are having a crab care emergency! Use a real subject and not just "HELP!"
Post Reply
User avatar

Topic author
The Franckinator
Posts: 273
Joined: Mon Apr 18, 2016 3:18 pm

Tan (rather than deep red), claw tips missing, and flooding

Post by The Franckinator » Wed Dec 20, 2017 12:32 am

A little backstory: Two years ago, around this time, I decided that I needed to beef up my enclosure for my hermit crab, Ray. I ended up with a 55 gallon tank and 4 other PP crabs as companions. Everything was fine, excluding a few bumps, for all this time until the end of this previous summer with me going back to school and my mother taking a job away from home. The crabs were on our minds as this was happening and we decided they either needed to be moved up with my mom or be adopted out. A decision was never made and I went on back to school and mom started her job.

A temporary solution was to have the neighbor come over during the week and replace food every two days and my mom would come home on the weekends to take care of them more closely. My neighbor had taken care of Ray before and my mom knows as much about the care of them as I do.

Fast forward: I had been noticing the sand looking as if algae had been growing on it when I would come home, but I simply did not have time to deal with it and dismissed it as being slightly moist. I never considered the possibility that the tank had flooded. This is problem #1. I discovered this today as I arrived home starting my winter break when I looked in the tank and saw a foot tip laying on the sand: Problem #2. With my stress increasing, I placed Ray, who was out and about, into a temporary tank with heating and mist for humidity. I scooped up the leg tip and threw it out, then I dug around looking for other crabs, finding Percy. The other two, Mike and Marshall, were nowhere to be found: Problem #3. I've since thought that they had burrowed under at some point after my leaving for school. Then the flood must have happened and they drowned. But I still don't know for sure. When I found Percy, though, I found that he is the one with the severed appendage. I noticed this and saw that his other leg on the same side had been chipped off on the end as well.

The only other thing is that Percy's carapace has been a tan color the past few months. He has the same diet as Ray, but the color has changed since I got him.

I have a 55 gallon tank with sand/EE substrate at around 9 to 12 inches. I feed them fruits, veggies, pb, dried shrimp, seaweed, etc. I have fresh water and salt water bowls with bubblers attached to maintain the humidity, which I haven't noticed any problems with, except that I think now that I overlooked venting, which might have prevented flooding. Plenty of hiding spaces, climbing spaces and chilling spaces.

The temporary tank is Ray's old one. It still has sand and EE with moss and a small bowl that I filled with water. It has two heating pads and I heavily misted it before placing him and Percy in it. I can't really put them back in the 55 now.

I realize that I've been neglectful. I am trying to adopt them out and I posted in the adoption section before I typed this. I want to keep Ray so badly, but that is out of question since I cannot care for him properly anymore. Any advice on any of this is appreciated. Any advice for Percy is especially appreciated (any speculation on how his claws were damaged?).

By the way, it is flooded to the point where if I scoop down by two inches, water pools in. It is pretty bad. I don't see how Mike or Marshall could still be alive if they are down there.
He's crawling all over my wrist..and he's sayin', "Won't you hurry up and get the mist?
"Feels like a desert around.. my bowls and sand mounds..so Imma frown..
"SO WILL YOU GET THE MIST!?"
Me - "HECK YEAH!"
(To the tune of "Business" by Eminem)

User avatar

LadyJinglyJones
Posts: 2130
Joined: Sat Aug 27, 2016 12:01 pm
Location: The 6ix, Ontario, Canada

Re: Tan (rather than deep red), claw tips missing, and flood

Post by LadyJinglyJones » Wed Dec 20, 2017 3:08 am

I'm sorry this happened - it must be very disheartening. :(

If you're going to be adopting them out then there isn't a ton to be done.

All you can do for Percy is feed lots of calcium, protein, and a good diet to help him build up strength for his next moult, when he'll need to regrow limb tips. Does it look like he recently molted? (Is he really hairy & bright eyed?) Colour changes - it doesn't really tell you much.

It can take a while to find an adopter, so getting either the small tank or the 55 gal in shape to maintain humidity & heat easily will be necessary. Your mentioned one water bowl, but i assume yout have both fresh & salt in there for them, as that is important.

Id probably dig for the missing crabs myself - though i agree they are probably dead. There may be areas that have better drainage, though I wouldn't get my hopes up. Digging is the only way to be sure of what happened to them.

That seems like a lot of water, really.... many gallons. If I had to guess I'd expect one of the water dishes leaking, or else a few good spills when filling the water exacerbated by condensation dripping into the sub perhaps. But of course thats just a guess.

Again, I'm really sorry.
"Gaze upon the rolling deep..."
Quince the fat tailed gecko; Amazonian minnows; and now Harry & Luis, Bede & Aster, Chandra & Jace, Pax, & Piccolo, my adopted PPs.
RIP Vegita :(

User avatar

Topic author
The Franckinator
Posts: 273
Joined: Mon Apr 18, 2016 3:18 pm

Re: Tan (rather than deep red), claw tips missing, and flood

Post by The Franckinator » Wed Dec 20, 2017 8:30 am

Does it look like he recently molted? (Is he really hairy & bright eyed?) Colour changes - it doesn't really tell you much.
I cannot tell. Overnight, I think he burrowed down, so I can't really say much on that. I don't remember him being very hairy, though. I doubt he molted because of the condition of the substrate.
Your mentioned one water bowl, but i assume yout have both fresh & salt in there for them, as that is important.
I only put fresh in the small tank overnight because it is a 10 gallon and I don't have much space in there. I reasoned fresh is more important for temporary usage. I'm going to figure out what to do to get salt water in there after I get home this evening.

I agree with what you have to say. I just need to get them into a safe home and that's my priority at the moment. I'm also going to dig for the other crabs this evening to see what I find - I'll update this thread when I do.
He's crawling all over my wrist..and he's sayin', "Won't you hurry up and get the mist?
"Feels like a desert around.. my bowls and sand mounds..so Imma frown..
"SO WILL YOU GET THE MIST!?"
Me - "HECK YEAH!"
(To the tune of "Business" by Eminem)

Post Reply