Archived information regarding hermit crab behavior.
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Sorry if this has been asked but I couldnt find it if it has.What behavior is Fighting or shell stealing.I see them climb and sometimes have stand off and "feeler" fights. My 2 new ones are ??climbing?? kinda hard on my 2 little ones. I am not sure if they are curious or pointing out that they are bigger or just climbing ??I went to the store today to get a few more crabbies and I was pretty much sick with the way that they were keeping them. The were all on glass. With a big fake rock ( like for fish) in the middle of the tank with a water dish and food dish. There were about 15 from quater size to tennis size. and there was about 1.5 Sq ft total.There were NO extra shells in the tank. I felt so bad that I bought the 2 that needed shells the worst....They can barley keep there tails in they are so big for there shells.I have a few big shells that I think will work for them but I am not sure how to shop for bigger shells ?? do I look for more space in the shell or maybe a bigger opening .. or both ?Thanks for any input !PS the new crabs are so happy for sand and toys that they have been going non stop for the last 8 hours.
Congrats on your new hermies though. feeler fights are no big deal, it's their way of getting aquainted. But mine do it quite often and it never concerns me. I always get new shells, just so I never run out. How many shells do you keep available for your crabs? I think four or five for different sizes of the crab are a good number, but the more you can comfortably fit into their crabitat the better.
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Just climbing over each other isn't a shell fight. It might be that they want to show they are bigger, but I think it's even more harmless: crabs have no concept of going aroungd something. They climb over everything in their path even if there's plenty of room to go around.If crabs fight for a shell, the crab that wants the occupied shell is sitting on top of it, rocking it around and trying to pull the other crab out and often both crabs are chirping.
Ook, said the Librarian
Crabbing since 2002
Crabbing since 2002
Feeler fights are ok, they are just saying hello to each other. When I shell fight occurs, that means there arn't any shells available for that crab that he actually likes. You will know its a shell fight because he will try to pull the other crab out of the shell he wants. If you are around at the time, you should put him in the iso for a while with a bunch of other shells.
OH! It's so weird you asked this, because last night I stayed up ALL NIGHT (and I had final exams this morning!) taking care of a shell fight. I have tons of shells, but aparently Excel decided that only Wayne's shell was good enough. She used her claws to grab his shell and also put them inside Wayne's shell to kinda poke at him and she used her legs to "hug" his shell and twisted him around forever. He was chirping a lot. My first reaction was to break them up but then I realized that this fight was inevitable and it would be worse if it happened while I wasn't home, so I put back next to eachother and watched CAREFULLY. It was so scary, they had a staring contest *intense* and then Excel POUNCED (!!!) on Wayne. I just wanted to make sure she didn't hurt him. After a very looong time, Wayne slowly started to climb out of his shell. I was especially overprotective at this point since his abdomen would be exposed. He crawled out and layed on his back perfectly still so as not to provoke Excel. I watched Excel to make sure she didn't try to pinch. She just took Wayne's shell and drug it off and played with it for a long time until changing. During this time, Wayne got up and bolted away. I didn't want him going around nakie, so I took a spare that he'd been in before and put it near him and he willingly got in.I hope that wasn't too much information. It was my first shell fight and there was a lot to say about it. Also, I tend to write too much and not speak enough. So I hope that wasn't too much detail. Hopefully that can help you identify a shell fight? Oh! and after that, Excel was in a bit of a frenzy and started attacking spare shells, so I kept her in ISO overnight and she is back to normal now.