Fluker's Hermit Headquarters Hermit Crab Growth Shells

Zoo Med Hermit Crab
is a terrestrial hermit crab found in tropical and sub-tropical areas. Living in humid areas this terrestrial hermit crab is a nocturnal scavenger that uses a gastropod shell to protect its soft body parts. These creatures are extremely social, foraging and traveling in groups. While is extremely social the species is known to be aggressive towards other hermit crabs in their group to steal better fitting shells. is also cannibalistic and will eat vulnerable molting crabs. While the purple pincher hermit crab is terrestrial it must return to the water to spawn and release it's larvae into the ocean.
Also, I think as they grow larger, they molt and what you may be seeing is the exoskeleton .....which looks just like a hermit crab out of a shell.
Growing Adult Medium Size Hermit Crab Shells

A pet owner should keep shells in a hermit crab habitat which are slightly larger than the one they currently occupy. As your crab grows he will go seeking a new, more suitable sized shell to crawl into. These are mid sized and good for young crabs. Pretty and decorative.
Hermit Crabs grow and they need larger shells to change into. This large shell is ideal to keep on hand in their enclosure.Hermit Crabs grow and they need larger shells to change into. This large shell is ideal to keep on hand in their enclosure.Hermit Crabs grow and they need larger shells to change into. This large shell is ideal to keep on hand in their enclosure.
There are 800 known species in the super family Paguroidea . They are commonly found in coastal tidal areas and exist in both terrestrial and aquatic habitats. Being detritovores, food is abundant in the crab's surroundings, and predators from birds to larger crabs also influence the crab's life. Hermit crab's shells are their main defense, thus finding appropriate shells is a great mitigating factor of surivial value in this species. This site focuses on the hermit crab behavior of choosing an appropriate shell for defense and growth, in the context of external influences such as limited shell availability, competition, predation, and varying shell quality.
Shell selection in hermit crabs can be categorized among Tinbergen (1967) 4 example of crucial topics in animal behavior research, which are: , , , and Although the fossil record is vague on specific hermit crab behaviors, we can trace the successful behavior of exogenous shell preferences back to the cretaceous period . Hermit crab's prevalence as well as their long zoological history shows the adaptive value of the trait, and the fact that it is their main system of protecting themselves and their young indicates that this trait heavily influences survival value. We can also examine the high selective pressure through a hermit crab's lifecycle to find a shell to protect it as well as accomodate its growth. Additionally, we can directly observe individual hermit crab mechanism of competition and agnostic behavior surrounding shell aquisition, which is crucial for obtaining the optimum shell fit and quality.The hermit crab then enters the adult stage of its life and will continue to grow under the found shell’s protection. It will develop a pair of lungs and begin foraging for detritus in the inter-tidal zone. This rich environment contains large quantities of nutrients, providing easy food sources for the hermit crab. However, although there is an abundant and diverse array of food, there is also a diverse array of predators. Larger crabs, fish, and birds all present threats to developing hermit crabs. Not only does its original small shell present a relatively easy and soft target, as the hermit crab grows its shell provides it less overall protection. Thus there is pressure to find new, larger shells either through finding an empty suitably sized shell, or by challenging other crabs for there existing ones. The Tiny Blue Leg Hermit Crab is a small size crab that is well suited in the saltwater reef aquarium. It has two claws which are about the same size and legs that are bright blue in color with a few red rings or bands. It is a moderately easy crab to take care and keep in the tank as they are able to adapt to a wide range of saltwater parameters. These crabs are a beneficial addition into the tank as it will eats unwanted algae such as the green hair algae and the red slime algae (or cyanobacteria) and also the left-over organic matters. The small size of the Tiny Blue Leg Hermit Crabs make them and excellent cleaner in the tank as they can forage into the smaller spaces, crevices and corners among the live rocks that other larger creatures cannot reach. These crabs also like to sift the sand while searching for food which helps to aerate and reduce "dead spots" in the substrate.

When keeping the Tiny or Dwarf Blue Leg Hermit Crab, bear in mind that these crabs will often change their "home" which is normally obtained from abandoned snails shells. However, they can sometimes kill other snails for their shell and also fight among themselves for the others shell. To prevent such conflict, ensure that sufficient empty shells of various sizes are available in the saltwater reef aquarium and do not over-crowded the tank.

When keeping or caring for the Tiny or Dwarf Blue Leg Hermit Crabs in your saltwater reef aquarium, bear in mind that like other invertebrates, copper is very harmful to them even at low concentration or ppm. You should also ensure that the tank calcium level is controlled at 350-450 parts per million for the healthy growth of their exoskeleton.