Help with my molting Red Clawed Crab...

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belfastbabe

iheartfish
Original poster
Feb 14, 2009
139
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Belfast, N.ire
hey everyone, could some one answer a few qs i have about my crab??
i was doing a regular water change and clean when i noticed the exo.... wow what a shock, ive had the little guy for about 1 month.
He lives with my fish community of : 2xSilver dollars, an Angel, 3xguppies, 2xneon tetras, sword tailed mollie, 4x dalmation mollies.... with lots of hiding spaces and sand :D he gets a great diet of veg (loves the peas), blood worms and basic flake n algae waffers... neways... cut it short... i noticed he was hidin in his cave n figured this was happening but!! he molted from a crab with 2 claws (seen by his exo) hes bigger now but only has one claw?
ive searched online for answers about how this happens and how come the claw has disapeared? :help:
Thanks lol xx
 

leeser28

AC Members
Jan 4, 2009
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Croton-on-Hudson, NY
I don't know that much, but from what I've read as the new exo grows in he'll grow a new claw.
 

jackiomy

Lover of Oddballs
Jul 6, 2008
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San Diego, CA
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Jacki Wilson
hey everyone, could some one answer a few qs i have about my crab??
i was doing a regular water change and clean when i noticed the exo.... wow what a shock, ive had the little guy for about 1 month.
He lives with my fish community of : 2xSilver dollars, an Angel, 3xguppies, 2xneon tetras, sword tailed mollie, 4x dalmation mollies.... with lots of hiding spaces and sand :D he gets a great diet of veg (loves the peas), blood worms and basic flake n algae waffers... neways... cut it short... i noticed he was hidin in his cave n figured this was happening but!! he molted from a crab with 2 claws (seen by his exo) hes bigger now but only has one claw?
ive searched online for answers about how this happens and how come the claw has disapeared? :help:
Thanks lol xx
Sometimes that happens but also they are really soft when they moult so one of the other fish might have gotten to him before he could get away. Make sure he is safe from everyone and leave his shell where he can eat it and he will more than likely grow the other claw back with his next moult.
 

belfastbabe

iheartfish
Original poster
Feb 14, 2009
139
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Belfast, N.ire
Thanks for in the input, i just left the exo alone, i know he will should eat it for the extra calcium.... also noticed he has 2legs missing, gosh i hope it he makes it, though he is climbing and gettin up to all his usual behavour now! Thanks again xx
 

Kashta

Always Niko's fault.....
Jun 24, 2008
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Red claws and other crabs can actually get stuck inside the exo they're trying to shed. That happens when they have been overfed.. or are getting too high a percentage of protein in their diet. They grow inside faster than they're able to shed their too-small outer skeleton. If they're not able to get out because of this, they can die like that. So losing a claw or a limb (which will regrow) is still lucky, if was the case for your crab. Perhaps he was ready to shed that a while ago, but didn't yet because of changing environments.
 

belfastbabe

iheartfish
Original poster
Feb 14, 2009
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Belfast, N.ire
hmm kashta... he might be eatin too much veg maybe... i just enjoy watchin the lil guy eat, its soooo cute! so maybe gettin stuck could have caused the limb loss. Does any one know like how often he should be fed realisticly?
he doesnt seem internested in eating the molted exo either?
but today hes been hiding alot, only seen him out once tryin to catch a guppie fish lol though with one claw hes a little disabled lol

Thanks everyone! not alot of info on the internet about the red clawed crabs.... even my pet store arent up to great knowledge (the guy told me "crusty" didnt need any land)
 

Kashta

Always Niko's fault.....
Jun 24, 2008
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Susan
Most of the info we find online isn't very reliable either. I used to have a red claw (from Petsmart). Had him in a little one gallon tank (temporarily) which was way too small. Either I didn't watch the water conditions well enough or my tap water had a chlorine spike.. I don't know. After about 2 months, he just stopped eating and died a short while later. Since then, I got a Rainbow Crab at a better LFS and he's doing great. The lady at Petsmart was quite knowledgeable about freshwater/land crabs in general, telling me about how she floated a chunk of styrofoam in her tank for the crab and made sure he had a way of climbing up there. Not very attractive, but it was a great suggestion. That gave me the idea to use floating cork bark the same way... which would look more natural. That's easily found in the reptile/terrarium section - totally natural product, so no added chemical stuff to worry about. As for feeding, the LFS place told me they fed their crabs a small chunk of krill once every 3 days. After looking at their price ($10) for a pound of frozen krill, I realized it would be cheaper to feed him real fish or even shrimp from the grocery store when that's on sale. Or even check out what I could find at a local bait shop to keep in my freezer. My Rainbow Crab also gets bloodworms and shrimp pellets. I basically go with a lot of variety for him. He's about 5 inches across now and he seems to get hungry every other day. I've yet to find anything of very much use online about feeding them. But we do know they need a good amount of calcium to maintain that exoskeleton.. and a good amount of protein for inside growth. Just that too much of good thing might make him outgrow the exo too fast. They also really like mango and papaya. So try giving him a small amount of two things at the same time, so you can see which he chooses. And don't lean too heavily either way between fruits/veggies and fish/meats.

Edit: When my crab molts, it usually takes him about 4 days before he gets around to eating the exo he left.
 

Kashta

Always Niko's fault.....
Jun 24, 2008
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Thought I'd show what my red claw (Nipper) looked like in his tiny one-gallon tank. I miss him a lot and having the Rainbow Crab isn't enough. Eventually, I'll get another "Nipper" and have a similar setup for him in a short 5 gallon tank.

Here are umpteen blurry photos of Nipper... (sorry, lol). That large, vague circle you see at the bottom is an overexposed shot of an algae wafer.

nipper1.jpg nipper2.jpg nipper3.jpg nipper5.jpg nipper6.jpg nipper7.jpg nipper8.jpg nipper9.jpg nipper10.jpg nipper11.jpg nipper12.jpg nipper13.jpg nipper14.jpg nipper16.jpg
 
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