Extremely concerning issue; potential extreme fight or sudden surface molt gone wrong - please read.

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

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Xenpurgisnachttt
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Extremely concerning issue; potential extreme fight or sudden surface molt gone wrong - please read.

Post by Xenpurgisnachttt » Tue May 28, 2019 1:06 am

Since you've come to the emergency forum, we know you want a fast answer to your question. In order for us to figure out the problem as quickly as possible, we ask that you answer the following questions as best you can. Some of them may seem odd, but they're all designed to give us the information we need to give you a good solution for your problem. The things in the [ brackets ] are there to make this post easier to read once submitted. Thanks!


I'm really upset, in a panic, and confused- I had an old account called Xenpurgisnachtt, but however, I couldn't access it so I made this new one; I walked up to my tank and checked the skull where all my crabs like to hang out and go into- I saw from the eyes that I saw a huge mess of crab parts and I nearly had a stroke as I took it out of the tank to see Iwao, my smallest male, totally limp on the floor ( no smell ) with tukiyo in his shell, and out of her old one. Iwao has been going under lately, and with this new substrate change while he's been trying it out, I think he's been rejecting it- I had no choice but to try to get Iwao out of the skull as gentle as I could and move him to an Iso and throw his limbs in there.

I checked the other two, and they was perfectly fine- however, I saw two large pinchers on the ground???? I really don't know what to think of it- also while moving Iwao to a small iso, his body was pretty tight, and compact- everything stayed together and he simply didn't fall apart in my hand. Could it be possible that he was trying to molt under, but due to the new substrate, rejected it, went back to the surface ( mind you, I saw no signs of digging up from any of the crabs or no messes on the ground, so I have no idea how he managed to resurface. ) and all the smells triggered a fight between tukiyo and Iwao???- or maybe it was a shell thing? I really don't know what's going on- I'll fill this out to the best of my ability.


1. What kind of substrate is used in your tank and how deep is it?

Generally 7 inches, and 1/4 play sand and 3/4 eco earth, with roughly 1/4 inches of moss at the bottom for filtration means.


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?

While I know digital monitors are the preferred way of doings, I use a non-electric one that displays both and it sits in the middle of the tank, a little elevated though. While 80% is typically the sweet spot, I've been really struggling as of late to get it up that high, It's been sitting at a solid 70%- however, the ground stays pretty moist and I'd rather not have to deal with another bacteria bloom so soon, and with the preferred sub mix too; so I'm not quite sure what to do.


3. Is a heat source used in the tank? If so, what?

Heating Pads ( my room even during the summer always acts funky so my tank is hard to warm up, and due to my 20gal tall having thick glass, I have to use a few of them- though nowadays I can get during

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)?

Dechlorinated Fresh and Salt water. ( Prime, Instant Ocean )

5. What kinds of food do you feed and how often is it replaced?

I know the prefered way is all organics, but ever since I've had them I always offered a variety of pre-dried foods ( grasshoppers, mealworms, blood worms, fruits, veggies, and of course crickets. ) with some organic variation in between whenever I have had access to them. This has been working perfect for me, and Odin, my first successful molter, worked well with this. Also, all their food is sprinkled with vitamin powder.

6. How long have you had the crab and what species is it, if known?

All of them I've been having since mid-august of last year, all three of them are PP's- Odin is a large, and Tukiyo and Iwao ( the main concern ) are pretty evenly sized- medium/smalls.

7. Has your crab molted, and how long ago did it happen?

I've had them for a little more then 9 months now, and Odin, the biggest, was the only one who has molted so far ( earlier this year ) the other two haven't molted yet, so I knew it was about time for them to be molting, and as of late, Iwao begun to show signs of going into molting- ( digging and staying under for long periods of time ) however, with me taking the possibilty of Iwao getting ready to go into full molt, a few days ago I changed the substrate to finally the proper kind, as the EE I was using that Odin molted in was having another issue of bacterial bloom. )

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

20 gal tall with plastic covering


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

Odin - Large, male

Tukiyo - Small/med, female

Iwao - Small/med, male ( they're both almost the same size. )

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

I know this is a massive, massive no-no, but I've been incredibly busy as of late as alot of bad irl things have going on, so I did take the shells out temporarily for a short time ( 2ish days ) All 3 of them have never fought during the time I've had them, and due to my stances I had shell-lacking periods before and they've never fought amongest themselves over anything- including shells; so until I could throw the multiude of shells on them I trusted them for the time being,(they was barely interested in changing shells) which probably could've been my biggest mistake and I feel incredibly guilty for doing so, because there always is the chance for things to go wrong.. in the event if this was a shell fight gone bad, tukiyo has always been the most aggressive one out of the bunch.


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

None.

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

Everyday I spot clean for feces, thrown about food, etc

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

None.

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

None, though ever since I had them, I only did strictly an eco earth sub, and only later on threw some moss in the mix, and only as of last week I've done the play sand/EE mix, which I believe is responsible for this to some level.


.

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wodesorel
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Re: Extremely concerning issue; potential extreme fight or sudden surface molt gone wrong - please read.

Post by wodesorel » Tue May 28, 2019 9:10 am

It sounds like a surface molt, and the other crab took advantage of the situation to steal his shell. They won't normally give it up without a fight, even when they have just molted.

Once you calm down a bit, without touching him, see how he's doing. He may have been severely injured, or he may have just lost a few limbs. Photos would be extremely helpful as well! It's great he's in an ISO. If he did just molt he won't need food for a few days, just stress free recovery.
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Xenpurgisnachttt
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Re: Extremely concerning issue; potential extreme fight or sudden surface molt gone wrong - please read.

Post by Xenpurgisnachttt » Tue May 28, 2019 9:40 am

I would provide photos but my sadly my phone is basically broken at the moment, so I'm empty handed- while I'm not sure if there was any other molted limbs- if he was in the process of molting, then tukiyo might've torn of those new-limbs, I did saw two big pinchers, and none of the other crabbies had any missing limbs.

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CrabMommaChara
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Re: Extremely concerning issue; potential extreme fight or sudden surface molt gone wrong - please read.

Post by CrabMommaChara » Tue May 28, 2019 10:18 am

Another tip from my marine biologist and hermit crab expert friend: keep feeding him high protein and high calcium foods to help him have the energy to regrow. Sorry to hear about the issue!
Chara, proud new mother of PPs Hermes and Athena


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Xenpurgisnachttt
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Re: Extremely concerning issue; potential extreme fight or sudden surface molt gone wrong - please read.

Post by Xenpurgisnachttt » Tue May 28, 2019 5:25 pm

Thank you for the tip! I'll have to see, well, if he passes away first; I haven't had the strong odor kick in, although is some smell from all the limbs I placed inside the iso so the other two wouldn't try and nab em


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Xenpurgisnachttt
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Re: Extremely concerning issue; potential extreme fight or sudden surface molt gone wrong - please read.

Post by Xenpurgisnachttt » Wed May 29, 2019 2:45 am

Update 1: It's been a little more then 24 hours; no extremely strong fish/death odor yet. Good sign I think! However, Iwao, still only has 1 freshly-molted limb ( he doesn't have anything else ) I think and he hasn't moved positions.

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Re: Extremely concerning issue; potential extreme fight or sudden surface molt gone wrong - please read.

Post by CrabMommaChara » Wed May 29, 2019 11:48 am

Keep food near him and if necessary hand feed him foods like honey and cuttlebone! Glad he's not dead!
Chara, proud new mother of PPs Hermes and Athena

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CrabMommaChara
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Re: Extremely concerning issue; potential extreme fight or sudden surface molt gone wrong - please read.

Post by CrabMommaChara » Wed May 29, 2019 11:54 am

And also, keep a bottlecap full of water under his mouth so he can just dip his head in if he needs it!
Chara, proud new mother of PPs Hermes and Athena


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Xenpurgisnachttt
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Re: Extremely concerning issue; potential extreme fight or sudden surface molt gone wrong - please read.

Post by Xenpurgisnachttt » Wed May 29, 2019 4:15 pm

Thank you! If the odor doesn't kick in soon I imagine, he's going under a really intense surface molt; also, I have not caught him moving/squirming period yet, so I don't know what would be a good time to try and handfeed him.


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Xenpurgisnachttt
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Re: Extremely concerning issue; potential extreme fight or sudden surface molt gone wrong - please read.

Post by Xenpurgisnachttt » Wed May 29, 2019 9:41 pm

Still no smell, but his abodmen looks slightly flatter.


Hermit199013
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Re: Extremely concerning issue; potential extreme fight or sudden surface molt gone wrong - please read.

Post by Hermit199013 » Thu May 30, 2019 7:38 pm

I hope things improve!! After reading alot in the emergency it breaks my heart to see things like this. I'm new to crabbies but hate to see stuff like this!! Keep us updated


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Xenpurgisnachttt
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Re: Extremely concerning issue; potential extreme fight or sudden surface molt gone wrong - please read.

Post by Xenpurgisnachttt » Fri May 31, 2019 3:45 pm

For sure! There still isn't any really strong odor and it's been some time, however, Iwao's body has flatten out some- would it be safe to say he's having a really tough surface molt? He hasn't moved positions either

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Re: Extremely concerning issue; potential extreme fight or sudden surface molt gone wrong - please read.

Post by wodesorel » Fri May 31, 2019 5:23 pm

If he has his old exo off already (double limbs found) and hasn't moved by now, I dont think it's good news. Molting crabs often won't have an odor immediately post molt if they pass. I'm so sorry.
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Xenpurgisnachttt
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Re: Extremely concerning issue; potential extreme fight or sudden surface molt gone wrong - please read.

Post by Xenpurgisnachttt » Sat Jun 01, 2019 1:29 am

It's depressing, but life happens- I'll give him until the morning to see if anything new happens, other then that I've got to move him out and bury him, he'll just become a health hazard to the other 2.


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Xenpurgisnachttt
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Re: Extremely concerning issue; potential extreme fight or sudden surface molt gone wrong - please read.

Post by Xenpurgisnachttt » Sat Jun 01, 2019 6:20 am

Well- this is the final update, but I went ahead and buried Iwao this morning in our yard for the sake of the health of the other two crabbies and I knew he wasn't around anymore; he was starting to break down.

Thank you for the people who asked for updates and kept up with this story; however, since there's now a vacant spot in the tank, I may get another PP or maybe an E.

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