aggression or Normal?

Where we discuss the behavior of our hermit crabs, as in fights, pecking orders, shell swaps, etc. Please post all naked-crab posts in the Emergency forum.
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MsWorld
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aggression or Normal?

Post by MsWorld » Thu Mar 31, 2016 6:00 pm

Hello all. We have 4 crabs altogether. 3 we got at the same time and from same place. The 4th came later... About a week after we got the first 3, 2 of them dug down into the EE/moss. After they did that, we got the 4th so the last one wouldn't be alone... Then, last night, the 3rd one dug down (assuming to molt).

Today, I look in at them and I find that Mr Krabs has come out. He's only been down for about 2 weeks, but I think he molted - fresh color, hairs on legs, looks a little bigger... Could he have molted?? He is much bigger than the 4th one, who is hiding in a corner cove (see pic) rather than in the log. Mr Krabs is now up exploring after a nap, and is eating, walking etc. on a couple occasions, he ran to the cove that Peanut is cornered in, and climbed up on top of him. Then out of the blue he took off like a heat seeking missile locked on a target straight to peanut in the cove. He was on top of him, I couldn't see if he had attacked him due to the wood in my line of sight. But I blew on him to back him off, which he did immediately, but is that normal/ok behavior? Or is that an act of aggression? Do I need to keep an eye on them?

Image
this is Peanut (painted shell) and Mr. Krabs

Image
Here is Peanut in his corner cove...




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marandashermies
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Re: aggression or Normal?

Post by marandashermies » Fri Apr 01, 2016 10:10 am

It's totally normal for crabs to climb on top of one another, have feeler "talks" etc. It's more of a dominance thing. As long as Mr. Krabs is not grabbing peanuts shell and rocking it/him or trying to pull him out, you should be fine. Maybe he was just excited to see his buddy, that's why he ran on over and jumped on top of him. Make sure you have enough shells for everyone of the proper size. If they are PPs, make sure you have lots of turbos in there as well!

2 weeks does seem short for a molt. Does he have sharp black toenails? I always look for that first. Just make sure you have lots of protein and calcium choices for them, in case he did molt. But he could have just been distressing or digging for fun as well! :)
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MsWorld
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Re: aggression or Normal?

Post by MsWorld » Fri Apr 01, 2016 10:38 am

Maranda, thank you for responding.

Yes, he did molt. He's covered in hairs, has black toenails, a little bigger in size, rich deep colors, huge appetite, etc. I think he was ready to molt when we bought Mr Krabs. As soon as we got him home from the store, all he would do was drink and drink and drink and eat. Then, he would dig down to sleep, then come out to eat again... Then a week after we got him, that's when he dug down for the last two weeks. He never met Peanut before, we rescued him while Krabs was molting...

As far as food, we have a buffet out for them, reminds me of Golden Coral... Peanut butter, honey, dried fruit, and a mixture that I make with fresh peanuts, dried fruits, egg shell, and a little of their food w/dried worms- all ground together with mortar and pestle. They seem to LOVE this dish!


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Re: aggression or Normal?

Post by MsWorld » Fri Apr 01, 2016 11:35 am

Also, I forgot to mention- we made it thru the night ok. Only had one tense situation where Krabs climbed on Peanuts back, and then held his big pincer out and open- looked like he was going to try using it on Peanut (?) I used a straw and knocked him off Peanuts back. After that, they've gotten along well together. Even sleeping next to each other in the log.


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marandashermies
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Re: aggression or Normal?

Post by marandashermies » Fri Apr 01, 2016 4:16 pm

Very normal especially if they have never met. My crabs have done this many times, including wiping up the big claw! But in the end they usually buddy up. Glad they are back to normal and MR. Krabs isn't trying to be a tough guy anymore


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DarthKrab
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Re: aggression or Normal?

Post by DarthKrab » Fri Apr 01, 2016 4:20 pm

marandashermies wrote:It's totally normal for crabs to climb on top of one another, have feeler "talks" etc. It's more of a dominance thing. As long as Mr. Krabs is not grabbing peanuts shell and rocking it/him or trying to pull him out, you should be fine. Maybe he was just excited to see his buddy, that's why he ran on over and jumped on top of him. Make sure you have enough shells for everyone of the proper size. If they are PPs, make sure you have lots of turbos in there as well!

2 weeks does seem short for a molt. Does he have sharp black toenails? I always look for that first. Just make sure you have lots of protein and calcium choices for them, in case he did molt. But he could have just been distressing or digging for fun as well! :)
What do the toenails signify? I often find myself curious about their little legs and toes Image

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MsWorld
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Re: aggression or Normal?

Post by MsWorld » Fri Apr 01, 2016 5:25 pm

DarthKrab wrote: What do the toenails signify? I often find myself curious about their little legs and toes Image

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Usually, right after they molt, you'll see tiny black tips on the end of their legs, looks like little black toenails

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marandashermies
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Re: aggression or Normal?

Post by marandashermies » Fri Apr 01, 2016 5:55 pm

I assume because the shed and get bigger, sometimes regenerating limbs if need be, the toe nails are part of them becoming a "fresh" new crab. I think they are very important for them in the wild to climb and such. Every time one of mine comes up from a moot they are hanging from the roof by night time, so I believe they enjoy their sharp little nails


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{125g~56g~55g} {30 PPs~ 10 Straws~ 5 Ruggies~ 2 E's~ 4 Viola's~ 2 Cavipes~ 2 Indo's}
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Candie
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Re: aggression or Normal?

Post by Candie » Sat Apr 02, 2016 10:31 am

One of my crabbies has all her toe nails so I was playing with her when my sister came in (she has never held a crab) she asked me if she could hold her
so I had her sit on the floor with her hand on the ground so she wouldn't drop her and I had her climbing from my hand to hers and the first thing my sister says is "oh my gosh she's pinching me oww!" I looked at her confused because this crab was never a pincher and when I first got pinched my reaction was way worse than hers so I look at the crab who's smelling her hand and she wasn't pinching it was her toe nails, I laughed at my sister and carefully lifted her off her hand. I never realized how sharp those toe nails were haha.

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MsWorld
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Re: aggression or Normal?

Post by MsWorld » Sat Apr 02, 2016 1:07 pm

Yes, "fresh" toenails are sharp. I think this is to help them climb.

One thing I've read is a lot of times, "poachers" will sometimes clip the toenails off of crabs that they take prisoner and sell as slaves to the pet stores. They do this primarily for that reason - so the nails won't hurt people. So, if you notice your crab does not have the black toenails after a molt, this is why.


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Rawrgeous
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Re: aggression or Normal?

Post by Rawrgeous » Sat Apr 02, 2016 9:29 pm

The crabs regrow the toenails. They will always have them after a molt. Usually they get worn down over time. But, I don't doubt any horrifying things about the pet trade. Pretty awful.

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Laurie LeAnn
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Re: aggression or Normal?

Post by Laurie LeAnn » Mon Apr 04, 2016 10:48 pm

Do you have been extra shells in your tank? He might be getting ready for a shell fight.. depending on the age of your crabs you could also have a male and female..mating season getting ready..

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