Hello! Me and my Hermit crab journey

Please post here if you are a new crab owner and someone will be along shortly to welcome you to the HCA! This is also the place to welcome new crabbies to your clan!
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Posts: 145
Joined: Fri Sep 27, 2019 12:06 pm
Location: West TN

Hello! Me and my Hermit crab journey

Post by Moe2076 » Fri Sep 27, 2019 9:48 pm


Thank you all so much for this wonderful resource! I have learned so much these last 3 weeks or so since I adopted my crab babies! I've been meaning to post in here to say hello and several times almost posted when I was freaking out but have tried to counsel myself with patience and have read and re read several things. I started a post in the molting category and realized I just can not resist the urge to tell the grand tale of how I have become completely and utterly OBSESSED with hermit crabs. I can tell I'm in good company.
The not so short of it is not unlike may other stories I have read. We went to the beach in Outer Banks, North Carolina (the week before hurricane Dorian, thankfully, the weather was beautiful and we had a great time!) It was maybe a day or 2 before we were ready to head back to rural West TN and we went into a chain souvenir store one night and there they were! Those little critters in painted shells were fascinating and the little boy inside this middle aged man that is never far beneath the surface came out... and then my wife saw me staring all googly eyed at them with that look on my face and sternly said NO! We have to drive 12 hours and you are NOT bringing that home it will die or get lost in the car!! She was right and I pouted some and deferred to her wisdom of the moment. Two or 3 days later as we were picking up our first furborn 12 yo Maltipoo from her sister's in Nashville, I passed an aquarium store and in I went, and out a came with my first, who was the largest most active one in a long D shaped Babilonia (it's opening is about an inch.) She looked at it and went back in to get it a friend, a little smaller in a greenish/browish silver mouthed turbo that is about 6/8 in opening (I pulled it out just now to measure... its' been pretty popular I think like 3 different crabs have been in it... but I'm jumping ahead.)
The hour and a half ride home and much of the 3 weeks since have been spent doing research and reading up about my fascinating friends. The rabbit hole got deep fast as I started to learn (after I have bought a bunch of things with "hermit crab" written on it...) how misunderstood and mistreated these poor creatures are in most of the settings in which I have found them and how awful most the things that say "hermit crab" on them are overpriced and not really good for them at all... The kid in the aquarium store where they kept them with black pebbles in the bottom of the tank told me to take it out and feed it 1 pellet every 3 days... The next day we went to the nearest city an hour away to Petsmart and Petco and I found a few more supplies and perhaps the larger 20 gallon 30 by 12 by 12 Crabitat I have them in now (7 or 8 in of 5:1 EE, play sand/all purpose sand. mixed with saltwater to sandcastle consistency, 2 coconut hides, double plastic dishes (one inside another) for decor water (stress coat) and salt water (instant ocean). I have bought a couple of those corner ceramic pet store food dishes (but not placed in the corners because I read that they like to bury themselves and molt in the corners) that I'll replace the next time I find 2 plastic dishes that fit together... I have 2 food dishes 1 for dry and 1 for fresh food, So far fresh apple is the favorite, dried coconut is popular too, they ignored strawberry completely. They really like puffed corn out of this bag of nature salad for rabbits (all the ingredients are on the safe food list) but they really haven't went crazy for much else in that bag. I bought them some mealworms but I feel like thy have had a lukeworm response. I thought they devoured an eggshell but found it hidden last night, but they did like it. Dried papaya is ok, mushrooms they didn't seem to really care for but one time they got buried and I took the dish out kinda soon after I tried it again so I'm still unsure about it. There's some zilla terrium moss in there in a couple places that they like to eat. I mist at times, but since I put some glass over the lids I've not had any problems with humidity at all. (My wife and her late mother worked with stained glass and we cut a couple of pieces of clear glass for both the 10 gallon and the 20 gallon aquariums.)
In my search for all of the things I was looking for to set it up and get all the right things I needed for their care I took pity on 1 who was kept in horrible conditions (no gauges) only crab in there hardly any substrate in the tank and that one buried itself in the 10 gallon almost immediately and has not been back up since, I do know that it changed shells, but other than that it's been buried and not come out for about 3 weeks. I just realized after boiling that shell that it has some kind of lacquer on it and I took it out of my mix of shells. I've ordered shells 3 or 4 times now and sent one set which were lacquered back. (from Florida marine research... you'd think they's know better) I've got a good mix of tapestry and green turbos and some gold mouthed ones which I know are on the less favored list ,but they came in a pack of 30 (From Florida shells and gifts the turbo pack from amazon) which more than half I think will fit my crabs. I really liked the order of 6 from SLSON which came in a box all individually wrapped. I also ordered a 10 pack from Pepperloney but they came packaged together and 1 of them was chipped, however what was in the photo was EXACTLY what was delivered and I really appreciated that. I'm not sure if I would order a larger pack from them for fear that there would be more broken and not the right size.
I have digressed... The following Friday and Saturday we were back to Jackson and Nashville to several different places (my wife was putting together a glo fish aquarium at the same time), I found my 4th (which was another pity rescue, in the small category it was in decent conditions but I was looking for a few mediums and having a hard time finding more crabs (not sure how thankful for that I should be or not... I'm kinda divided on the whole commercial hermit crab industry... it's awful really but I live out in the middle of nowhere and not sure i could rescue form any other place near here) and then I found 3 mediums and was fairly pleased with they way they were cared for and had to have them despite their painted shells. All the painted shells were too small and in my opinion too brittle snail shells and they changed out almost immediately when one of my order of shells came. I have a couple in pearl turbos and an couple in tapestry turbos and that Babylonian has a different crab in it. Oh they are all PP's

Anywho... I'm glad to be here and share my journey as well as learn whatever I can about trying to find the best positive care for them. I know this was long, but I also know someone else out there feels just like I do and will benefit form my post as I have from reading so many others.
18 PP: 2 teenie 3 small Gumbo; 1 small/med shell diva; 6 med: Evil Kenival 6 med/large
3 dogs: Maltipoo Tosh Pomeranian/Spitz Kaylee: Rotwieler/hound Bear
4 cats: Dottie calico Luna: DSH grey and white Moxie:kitten with spunk Ellis:Big lovey orange tabby

Posts: 61
Joined: Fri Jul 19, 2019 11:11 pm

Re: Hello! Me and my Hermit crab journey

Post by KristenL0522 » Fri Sep 27, 2019 10:14 pm

Hello!! Welcome!! Sounds like you’re doing good and in the same boat we are all in!! You’re in good company :hlol: :hlol: I’m glad to have found this place as well. I’d be in a mess if not.

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