My little ones! - Talk Parrots Forums

 
LinkBack Thread Tools
post #1 of 17 (permalink) Old 10-03-2014, 04:30 PM Thread Starter
 
Izilla's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2014
Posts: 67
Thanks: 2
Thanked 14 Times in 13 Posts
Rep Power: 6
 
My little ones!

I was so excited to see that other people here have reptiles Hermit crabs aren't reptiles, but hopefully you guys think they're as cute as I do!

This is their crabitat, its a 75gal and the picture doesn't do it justice. Its hard to really see everything in there unless you move around it and look, but Youtube hates me so I don't dare try to take a video



And the crabbies!



They're all caribbean land hermit crabs, also known as purple pinchers/PPs

Anorith is my biggest one, he's a large on the hermit crab size chart. He's mildly shy and he can be pinchy depending on the day. I've had him for a little over a year.
Shuckle is a female, she's on the small end of medium on the size chart. She has the biggest personality out of everybody I wouldn't even know where to start. She just had her two-year coming home anniversary last month
Clauncher is also a female and is on the small end of medium. She's super shy, but sweet. I've had her for about a year.
Omanyte is small on the chart. She's a really sweet little crab and has always been pretty outgoing I've had her for about a year too.

So that's it for the crabs, onto Percy~



He's a jeweled curly tailed lizard~ He's really flitty and not handlable at all, but he's super cute! (He doesn't have that t-rex skull anymore, the heat was drawing out a disgusting fumey stink from it. He likes his new driftwood a lot better, anyway!)

Izilla is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
post #2 of 17 (permalink) Old 10-03-2014, 04:52 PM


 
SoCalTiels's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2014
Location: California
Posts: 210
Thanks: 77
Thanked 90 Times in 65 Posts
Rep Power: 6
 
Man, I used to have hermit crabs growing up! We used to come home with one for me and my sister when we visited my grandparents in Florida over the years. I will say, your set up for them is gorgeous. Not the sand and a stick variety I seem to see so much of. Seems like a great environment (:

Beautiful lizard as well! Only experience with lizards was through bearded dragons, we had five a few years back. Sorry to hear about the t-rex skull decoration, it was a cool bit of scenery. Associated smell isn't worth it though, lol. Seriously, I love your reptile/crab set ups! They go so far above an beyond the 'generic owner' interest in an animal, great cage ideas.



lindsay, owned by three conures
six tiels, two dogs & two tortoises
SoCalTiels is offline  
post #3 of 17 (permalink) Old 10-03-2014, 05:07 PM Thread Starter
 
Izilla's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2014
Posts: 67
Thanks: 2
Thanked 14 Times in 13 Posts
Rep Power: 6
 
Thankyou! Hermit crabs need very specialized environments and most people just don't know that. Pet stores are pretty good at instructing people on how to kill them in a week so you'll have to come buy more, but not tell you how to ACTUALLY take care of them. Those "hermit crab kits" they sell are perfect death traps :C Everything from the gravel down to the painted shells, its all completely inappropriate for what they need to stay alive. They have a 30+ year lifespan, despite whatever pet stores tell people. It sucks that pet stores give such inaccurate information on their animals sometimes. When I bought Percy, I wasn't even offered a care sheet. They just plunked him into a box (which he got his leg caught in and almost broke it on the way home) and took us to the cash register. Its a good thing I do a lot of research on my pets before I bring them home, or else I would have been fairly clueless!

Thanks so much, I really try to go above and beyond with my pets' cages/tanks. I try to replicate their natural environment as best I can

Izilla is offline  
 
post #4 of 17 (permalink) Old 10-03-2014, 05:46 PM


 
SoCalTiels's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2014
Location: California
Posts: 210
Thanks: 77
Thanked 90 Times in 65 Posts
Rep Power: 6
 
My little ones!

I can say we had each for quite some time, I was young but my parents were animal savvy enough to not follow the silly care sheets. It's is great of you to put the effort into their environment, they all have such individual personalities.

I follow the general rule that just about anyone can get a job at a pet store, doesn't meant they know what they're talking about :/ I've heard some pretty awful information from employees at major pet retails stores over the years. I follow the 'natural is better' rule for all pets now. I even recently redesigned my Betta tank to a natural plant environment and soon to be setting up another fully planted tank. Even for the animals that everyone sees as 'lesser' on the pet scale, like reptiles, fish, birds etc, they still respond to what's around them and it involves the best environment you can provide them.



lindsay, owned by three conures
six tiels, two dogs & two tortoises

Last edited by SoCalTiels; 10-03-2014 at 05:54 PM.
SoCalTiels is offline  
post #5 of 17 (permalink) Old 10-03-2014, 05:51 PM Thread Starter
 
Izilla's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2014
Posts: 67
Thanks: 2
Thanked 14 Times in 13 Posts
Rep Power: 6
 
That's great to hear I wish more people were that savvy! Its so sad whenever I go to a pet store and see a toddler marching out of the store with a hermit crab in a little plastic kritter keeper with gravel, a sponge, and commercial crab food :C They need playsand/coconut fiber mix for substrate that is deep enough for them to dig, tunnel, and molt in and gravel doesn't work for that. Sponges harbor bacteria and crabbies need to be able to submerge in their water pools, they need fresh and marine grade salt water, so the sponges don't cut it. A lot of the ingredients in commercial hermit crab food is actually toxic to them too :C The poor things get the short end of the stick so much of the time.

Izilla is offline  
post #6 of 17 (permalink) Old 10-03-2014, 06:00 PM


 
SoCalTiels's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2014
Location: California
Posts: 210
Thanks: 77
Thanked 90 Times in 65 Posts
Rep Power: 6
 
Totally understood :/ especially when you know what's involved, it's hard to see others make mistakes with an animal you care about. I've seen quite a few people walk out of a pet store with a male and female betta pair and a 1 gallon bowl to keep them in, it's cringe worthy. Generally accepted pet store 'facts' can be pretty brutal in practice.



lindsay, owned by three conures
six tiels, two dogs & two tortoises
SoCalTiels is offline  
post #7 of 17 (permalink) Old 10-03-2014, 06:13 PM



 
catalinadee's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: UK
Posts: 17,637
Thanks: 1,593
Thanked 2,007 Times in 1,575 Posts
Rep Power: 99
                     
Your other critters are adorable! And you do have awesome set ups

Hermit crabs are definitely on my future pet list! I didn't know they're called purple pinchers, that's so cute I'm a long way off getting anything else got a while though. Trying to get my vivariums looking natural, building a pond for my yellow bellied slider and then looking for a large tank for my other 4 turtles, a new set up for my African clawed frog. Sigh, there's loads to be done! I won't even get started on the birds I would love to hear more about hermit crabs for future reference though!

- Alexandrine parakeets Holly, George, Koda & - Crimson rosella Kasumi Orange winged Amazon parrot Paulie
catalinadee is offline  
post #8 of 17 (permalink) Old 10-03-2014, 06:15 PM Thread Starter
 
Izilla's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2014
Posts: 67
Thanks: 2
Thanked 14 Times in 13 Posts
Rep Power: 6
 
You shouldn't have said that, now you'll never be able to get me to shut up! Did you want to know anything specific?

Izilla is offline  
post #9 of 17 (permalink) Old 10-03-2014, 06:28 PM



 
catalinadee's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: UK
Posts: 17,637
Thanks: 1,593
Thanked 2,007 Times in 1,575 Posts
Rep Power: 99
                     
My little ones!

How about everything that's a good place to start right?

- Alexandrine parakeets Holly, George, Koda & - Crimson rosella Kasumi Orange winged Amazon parrot Paulie
catalinadee is offline  
post #10 of 17 (permalink) Old 10-03-2014, 06:59 PM Thread Starter
 
Izilla's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2014
Posts: 67
Thanks: 2
Thanked 14 Times in 13 Posts
Rep Power: 6
 
Alrighty~ Some of it may be tricky, because I'm not sure which species are available in the UK and their needs can be slightly different. ^u^;

Enclosure: 10gal tank minimum (for small crabs) with glass lid (with some holes for air exchange) to help hold in heat and humidity. They can grow fast though and by the time they get big, they'll need a 50gal minimum. I went from a 10gal, to a 20gal long, to a 29gal, to a 75gal all in the course of 2 years.
*The tiny kritter keeper/pet keeper "hermit crab kits" are too small even for the smallest of crabs, despite being marketed for hermit crabs.

Substrate: Playsand mixed with eco earth coconut fiber, moistened with salt water to sand castle consistency. The salt water helps prevent mold. Most people mix it to a 5:1 ratio of sand : EE. The depth of the substrate has to be at least 6in, or three times deeper than the biggest crab is tall in order for proper molting. Some species need at least 10in because some dig and tunnel more than others. Molting varies depending on size, but can take 1-4 months for small guys and 5-8+ months for the big ones. So they're definitely a pet you're gonna go without seeing for awhile sometimes. All of mine have been down molting for about a month so far, right now.
*Calcium sand, colored sand, "hermit crab sand" - its all the same thing, and since it clumps and gets hard when it gets moist, its absolutely not suitable to use, despite being marketed for hermit crabs.

Temperature: 80 degrees F, no less than 75 degrees F; anything below that will cause lethargy and slow death because they're cold blooded and require hot temps. Some species are better with 85 degree F - 90 degrees F temps. Most people use undertank heaters mounted on the back or sides of the tank above the substrate level, so that its heating the air inside the tank. UTHs aren't designed to heat through the amount of substrate hermit crabs need, and they can also become a fire hazard with the amount of substrate.
*"Hermit crab heaters" are tiny UTHs that are too small to make a temperature difference at all.

Humidity: 80%. Higher than that isn't detrimental to them, but it can promote mold growth in the tank. They breathe through modified gills, which means they cant be in dry air, but they also cant be submerged in water for long.

Food: Fresh and dried foods, and its best if you dry the foods yourself to make sure there's no bad preservatives. Some foods are toxic to them, so doublecheck on the internet to make sure. Hermit Crab Association has a safe food list and an unsafe food list. They need lots of animal protein in their diet, or they'll start eating each other for it. Mine love shrimp, lobster, fish, scrambled egg, cooked unseasoned chicken, cooked unseasoned hamburger the best for proteins. They also love fruits and veggies and things like dried maple leaves, millet and chia sprouts, etc. I make my own dried food mixes for them too, they're basically the same thing except for a few ingredients, but presented in different forms and that's enough to keep them interested because of variety. The 'chunky' mix is dried papaya, dried pineapple, dried cherries, dried banana chips, raisins, dried corn, dried peas, dried green beans, dried carrots, millet seeds, pecans, walnuts, dried river shrimp, dried crickets, and dried mealworms. The 'powder' mix is all of that, minus the fruit, and with added oats and cuttlefish bone. Mine also love organic honey as a treat! They always have a cuttlebone in there too, because calcium is important when they molt especially
*Avoid commercial "hermit crab" foods, they have harmful ingredients in them despite being marketed for hermit crabs.

Water: Two dishes, big enough for the biggest crabs to submerge in to exchange the water they keep in their shell to help them breathe, with a ramp to make sure the littler guys can get out once they get in. One fresh water dish, one salt water dish, both treated with dechlorinator. The salt water needs to be marine grade for saltwater fish because it has all the minerals, etc that oceanwater has. Instant Ocean is the salt mix that is most recommended.
*"Hermit crab water" doesn't contain all of the minerals of actual sea water, which land hermit crabs need to survive even though they're terrestrial, and isn't appropriate to use despite being marketed for hermit crabs.

Shells: This is very very dependent on what species you have, since different species like different shells. Caribbean crabs like turbos, Ecuadorian crabs like nerites, etc so I can help you better with this when you find out exactly what kindof crabs are available in your area. Caribbean/PPs are generally the most common in most places, though. There are a bunch of exotic species you pretty much have to order from somebody who imports them from suppliers in the native countries, but her business hasn't been getting good reviews lately :C But, each crab needs 3 - 5 appropriate shells to choose from at any given time.
*Painted/glow in the dark shells are toxic to them as the paint chips off and they eat it, and the paint makes the shell unbreathable through the microscopic pores in the shell that get covered and sealed with the paint. The process of getting a crab into a painted shell for the pet store is also extremely cruel. I wont go into detail if you don't want me to.

Decorations: They need hideys, and be careful of resin hides because some of them will give off a nasty chemical smell when exposed to heat/humidity like Percy's t-rex skull did and those fumes are very harmful to crabs. A lot of people use hollowed out halved coconuts with doors cut into them, but they can mold and might need to be replaced. They're also climbers and need things to climb~ Cholla wood is especially popular, and those reptile vines that are foam with wire inside and you can bend or twist them work great too. Hanging plants work too, but they like cholla and vines better. Mine also have coral and marine fossils that were disinfected and they LOVE them! They also love moss pits, which is basically a tupperware or shower caddy filled with moistened sphagnum moss. They eat it, they dig in it, etc You can also make second levels for them out of turtle docks, lizard ladders, hemp hammocks, locker shelves, etc so that they have more room to climb and walk around without being all up in each other's business.
*Painted plastic cholla wood isn't suitable because the paint doesn't hold up to the humidity and chips and peels off, and its harmful if the crabs eat it.

Companionship: They're very social and cant really be kept alone. They need at least one member of their same species with them, but a group of 4-5 is a good minimum as long as you're not overcrowding the tank. General rule of thumb is one crab per 5 gallons, but the big ones need 15 gallons per crab (and at least one foot of substrate).

I feel like I'm forgetting something, so if I think of anything else I'll be sure to let you know


Last edited by Izilla; 10-04-2014 at 02:52 AM.
Izilla is offline  
The Following User Says Thank You to Izilla For This Useful Post:
catalinadee (10-09-2014)
post #11 of 17 (permalink) Old 10-03-2014, 08:00 PM


 
wyrinth's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2013
Location: NYC, USA
Posts: 1,058
Thanks: 1,411
Thanked 748 Times in 515 Posts
Rep Power: 12
       
Wow, I was thinking of getting hermit crabs for my kids ( with me helping of course) but never even went into the research part of it because I have yet to see a pet store that stocks the ones with the natural shells....I can't deal with those painted ones, and that was before I found out from you that they were toxic, I just hated how it made them look like ornaments rather than animals.

I can't picture how a hermit crab can get so big that you need such a large tank. That makes them more interesting, that they can flourish with care, I think they are back on my future first pets for " my kids " ( at least that will be the excuse). They sound kind of like the same kind of care for a reptile.

Stitch Pikachu Thor Loki

BlazeCinder Sunday

Storm Sky
wyrinth is offline  
post #12 of 17 (permalink) Old 10-03-2014, 08:08 PM Thread Starter
 
Izilla's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2014
Posts: 67
Thanks: 2
Thanked 14 Times in 13 Posts
Rep Power: 6
 
Its hard to find a store that stocks them in natural shells. People generally buy them as ornaments, so they want them to look "fancy" Anorith and Omanyte came in painted shells, but they switched to natural shells pretty quickly once I got them home.

They can get enormous! They can grow up to needing a shell with a round opening that's 2in wide, and their pincher claw will be pretty close to the same size as the shell's opening, so the rest of the crab inside of the shell is pretty huge, too! Pretty much the same size as, or bigger than your hand with your fingers spread. It takes 10-15 years for them to get that big though, so not a ton of captive hermit crabs make it to that size.

Izilla is offline  
The Following User Says Thank You to Izilla For This Useful Post:
wyrinth (10-03-2014)
post #13 of 17 (permalink) Old 10-08-2014, 10:07 PM


 
KTyne's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2011
Location: Edmonton
Posts: 3,259
Thanks: 22
Thanked 362 Times in 298 Posts
Rep Power: 24
               
I haven't read through all of the comments but I can say your guys are cute! I considered getting hermit crabs before but decided not to because their care requirements are just too much for me, at least for now. Very cool little guys though!

I currently have 1 African Fat-tailed Gecko, 1 Leopard Gecko, 2 Crested Geckos, 1 Bearded Dragon, 1 Corn Snake, 1 Kenyan Sand Boa, and 1 Rosy Boa.... oh and two Cats, lol.

Reptiles are a bit of a passion of mine. ^_^



KTyne is offline  
post #14 of 17 (permalink) Old 10-08-2014, 10:30 PM Thread Starter
 
Izilla's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2014
Posts: 67
Thanks: 2
Thanked 14 Times in 13 Posts
Rep Power: 6
 
Thankyou!

I used to be very into reptiles, but the interest has faded. I've had geckos, snakes, and beardies but most of them had to be rehomed because the cost of care was getting to be too much. I did get to keep one snake and two beardies through their lives though, I absolutely loved my beardies!

Izilla is offline  
post #15 of 17 (permalink) Old 10-09-2014, 12:46 PM


 
KTyne's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2011
Location: Edmonton
Posts: 3,259
Thanks: 22
Thanked 362 Times in 298 Posts
Rep Power: 24
               
Beardies are pretty awesome as a whole, my boy is a total spaz though and is terrified of people



KTyne is offline  
post #16 of 17 (permalink) Old 10-09-2014, 12:58 PM Thread Starter
 
Izilla's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2014
Posts: 67
Thanks: 2
Thanked 14 Times in 13 Posts
Rep Power: 6
 
Mine were super chill, especially the smaller one. If I had room, I would get another one someday. They were just so sweet!

Izilla is offline  
post #17 of 17 (permalink) Old 10-09-2014, 03:38 PM



 
catalinadee's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: UK
Posts: 17,637
Thanks: 1,593
Thanked 2,007 Times in 1,575 Posts
Rep Power: 99
                     
Thank you so much for all of the information! I definitely won't be getting any soon but they're something I'm going to consider for the future as I find them very cute and interesting I'm glad that you've told me more about them though, as I'd of probably killed them very quick with the products we have available for them here

I loooooove bearded dragons. My fiance and his sister have a pair called Lenny and Marge who live back at his parents and I have my own, Hershel (please tell me TWD fans get this!). Marge came from a very bad situation and so is quite fearful of human presence but she will let you hold her, just not for long. Lenny is a big old lazy lump and doesn't really do much. Hershel is... nuts. He's my big silly baby and he has come a long way since I got him. He was SUCH a mess when I got him from a reptile show. He was 8, extremely skinny and was/is missing a lot of his tail and parts of his feet! He tamed down really well though and became quite the cuddle bug. I've got 1 (or 3) beardies, 1 leopard gecko, 1 Irian Jaya blue tongued skink, 3 common boas (2 are babies but Hendrix is 10ft), 2 Kenyan sand boas, 2 (or 3 if you count my Jack's sisters who I've cared for for a while) corn snakes, a royal/ball python, 3 musk turtles, an Ouachita map turtle and a yellow bellied slider. Phew. I love reptiles I'm not done yet either

- Alexandrine parakeets Holly, George, Koda & - Crimson rosella Kasumi Orange winged Amazon parrot Paulie
catalinadee is offline  
Closed Thread

Quick Reply
Message:
Options

Register Now



In order to be able to post messages on the Talk Parrots Forums forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.

User Name:
Password
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.

Password:


Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.

Email Address:
OR

Log-in










Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page



Posting Rules  
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On

 
For the best viewing experience please update your browser to Google Chrome