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More on Hermit Crab Care
Hermit crabs are very important crustaceans that require constant attention to survive. Since the crabs are not born in captivity, so there is always the issue of adapting to a human environment for these great animals. This obviously requires a lot of confidence from the crabs because they are very sensitive to any kind of hardness. Checking the proper rules of hermit crab care is important, because without care these crabs do not live for long. Often, when every aspect of their life is properly cared for, these large animals can even live more than 20 years and be a lifelong companion of the house.
The first principle of hermit crab treatment is to acknowledge the mystery of the small crustaceans. You should be able to marvel at the amazing senses of perception and individuality that these great animals show in their varied daily activities. Their peculiarity about their shells and their choice of eating foods only when they are hungry, shows them to be highly rational beings. They are amazing climbers, and you will be amazed to see them climbing up and down rock faces or the floors of salt water tanks in their tents. Small crustaceans have very expressive eyes and they often show sudden (and unexpected) mood swings in their decisions.
The next part of crab care is securing the crabs in a perfect habitat. If you have sea urchins, then you have to set up an aqua coral reef system with enough rocks to allow the crabs to climb and rest. The water should be dechlorinated and the aquarist should be able to maintain a balanced nitrogen cycle system in the aquarium. Water crabs molt within a couple of minutes, so no special attention is required when molting for marine crabs. The ideal specific gravity is 1.022-1.0240 and the salinity level should be 30-40 ppt.
For land hermit crabs, the habitat should be an enclosure of sub stratum sand. The sand should be moist, but not runny. The height of the sand bed should be enough for a larger crab to completely disappear in the sand. Provide a variety of good shell choices for crabs. Broken sea shells should not be given because they are dangerous for crabs. A land crab owner should be able to understand the early signs of molting and take immediate steps to gently remove the crab to the isolation tank. However, if the transfer is not possible due to the advanced molting stage, then the crab owner should set up an isolation barrier (something that other crabs cannot climb or dig up). Alternatively, you can also try removing all the non-molting crabs to a different enclosure and leave the molting crab alone in the old enclosure. Molting in land crabs is a long process that can take more than a month, so good care should be taken care of the crab. Disturbing the crab at any point of the molting season is not allowed, because that can be fatal for the crab.
Another important part of hermit crab care is the food of the crabs. The land crab enclosure should have a separate container for fresh water and a separate one for salt water (both dechlorinated). This is because land crabs drink only fresh water and bathe in salt water. These large animals are omnivores and they prefer carotene and calcium based food for themselves. They like planktons, dry shrimps, coral deposits, blood bones, fish flakes, crushed egg yolk, crushed calcium tablets and cut oyster shell as daily meals. They treat fruits, vegetables, unsalted fruits and resins as delicacies. They really like to eat their own exoskeleton after molting. During molting, the crab should be provided with food rich in carotene.
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