Reef Safe. However, the observations for the first few days revealed relative group stability. By doing so, the male actually “helps” the female out of her exoskeleton by actively pulling at the legs and chelipeds. The female hermit crab has tiny genital openings called gonopores. After copulation, the male may push the female away and mating is completed. This tiny crab lives in abandoned snail shells, or it may attack and … Aquariumbreeder.com is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com, chewy.com, and and other Affiliate programs. These active creatures spend their time scavenging for food and make excellent partners in algae management. Remember that in the wild, Blue leg hermit crabs usually prefer to live in intertidal sandy-bottom substrates. Although they live in a hard shell, it is advisable to take caution when you intend to keep them with the more aggressive marine invertebrates. When two crabs come in contact, the most frequently used aggressive signal is the single raise of the legs (0.24 seconds). You can just purchase a normal LED aquarium light. In more intense aggressive interactions, individuals of tricolor may employ all four ambulatory legs in a quadruple raise. DOI: 7717/peerj.3004. Therefore, in tanks with lots of goodies and excess feeding, these crabs will tend to ignore the Aiptasia. Large males can barely reach 1 inch long (2.5 cm), and as the name implies, they have blue legs. Behav Ecol Sociobiol (2006) 60: 492–500 DOI 10.1007/s00265-006-0191-3, Blue Leg Hermit Crab – Detailed Guide: Care, Diet, and Breeding. Because of their small size, they will able to reach some areas other tank janitors cannot reach. When caring for the Tiny Blue Leg Hermit Crab (or Clibanarius tricolor), ensure that you have sufficient empty shells of various sizes in the saltwater reef aquarium. Have you ever spotted nasty-looking brown patches on diverse surfaces in your reef tank and wondered what they were? There are about 500 known species of the hermit crab, and the Blue Legged Hermit Crab is one of them. This kind of behavior protects the recently molted and weak female from being attacked by other shell-seeking hermit crabs. If sifts and aerates the sand as well. Even biologists say that they also know little about reproduction among Clibanarius tricolor species. Hermit crabs are unique among higher crustaceans (like shrimp, crabs or crayfish) because they generally utilize snail shells as portable shelters for protection because their body is soft and fragile. It makes them almost ideal creatures for many aquarists. Named after its bright and colorful red-banded blue legs, the Blue Leg Hermit Crab has claws of equal size and makes its home in abandoned snail shells. Cerith snails are particularly favored by Clibanarius tricolor, so reef safe does not mean snail safe. The Blue Leg Hermit Crab (Clibanarius tricolor) is a small marine invertebrate heavily exploited by the ornamental pet industry. Their major drawback to me was they kept on killing each other for each other's shells. Both claws are of equal size, and members of this genus are sometimes called "Equal-handed Hermit Crabs." Maximum Size: 2cms The copulation lasts only 1-3 seconds. Avoid overstocking them. The Blue Leg Hermit Crab (Clibanarius tricolor) is a nice addition to any saltwater reef tank because it is extremely good detritus eater and will aid in the removal of excess food, waste and algae from your home aquarium. That’s why they are sometimes referred to as the ‘Equal-handed hermit crab’. It makes them some of the few good tankmates for the Beadlet Anemone. Electric Blue Hermit Crab, Scarlet Reef Hermit Crab, Electric Orange Hermit Crab, Halloween Hermit Crab and Zebra Hermit Crab. Next, it starts shaking the other crab until it cannot hold the shell. Tip: If you are purchasing gravel, make sure that the grains are small enough for the hermit crab to sift. In this article, I discuss everything you need to know about the Blue Leg Hermit Crab including how to care for them, behavior, tank mates and much more. For the substrate, you can use either sand or small gravel. They are usually able to right themselves rapidly through movements of their second legs. Sharp feet may damage the soft flesh of stony corals. Try not to keep them in the same tanks with snails because they can try to kill them just for their shells. Other than general size, there is no visible external sexual dimorphism. 1988. $ 1.29. Blue Leg Hermit Crabs have been reported eating, Fecundity usually increases with female body size in hermit. This species is nocturnal. Clibanarius tricolor is neither a rapidly nor slowly moving crab relative to other species. They can be a great addition to a reef aquarium. Blue Leg Hermit Crabs have been reported eating Aiptasia. On average, Clibanarius tricolor species lives for about 2 years, but under good conditions can live a little longer. For example, you can give them – krill, Mysis, frozen carnivore cubes, pellets, flakes and they will be very grateful for it. Ideally, to avoid crowding the aquarium, one should aim for just one Blue leg hermit crabs per 3 – 4 gallons of water. These hermit crabs can become aggressive if there are too many of them in an aquarium due to competition for their shells. Unless your hermit crab is willing to come rather far out of its shell for you. Blue Leg Hermit Crabs usually do not show any change in their behavior when they meet. This species will spend most of its time scavenging the live rock for algae or seaweed to feed on. So, if you are interested in getting into this hobby or just want some extra tips and tricks, well this is the right place for you. Small crabs sometimes don't have claws big enough to grab onto pellet-type food. Foraging behaviour of the hermit crab Clibanarius erythropus in a Mediterranean shore. A hermit crab will moult from its exoskeleton in order to grow. These are Ciliopagurus Tricolor (Blue leg hermit crab – read my guide), Ciliopagurus Galzini, Ciliopagurus Vakovako, and Ciliopagurus strigatus. For example, you can keep them with non-aggressive and relatively small fish like Mollies, Guppies, Tetras, Zebra Blennies, etc. While all four legs are engaged in this manner, the animal maintains an upright position by using its claws for support and/or leaning back, balancing itself on its shell. It does not damage corals or jostle them, unlike other Hermit crab species. They often fight for them. Archachatina Marginata – Detailed Guide: Care, Diet and Breeding. In addition to their colorful appearance, they are low maintenance hermit crabs that are very hardy and require little care. They do not need fancy filtration and lighting. The problem is that if they can find something else to eat, they will always choose the more tasty food over the Aiptasia. Description. Your email address will not be published. Note: I would like to add that some aquarists consider their hermit crabs to be the scavengers and do not even think to feed them any additional food. Your email address will not be published. Snails & small polyps are at risk from these crabs, as are any other tiny invertebrates. Sharp feet can damage the soft flesh of the corals. Provide an ample number of empty shells of various sizes. Ian Lancaster. You can even join the clubs, associations and forums, ask questions, and talk to fellow crabbers around the world. The male may start violent rocking and the frequency of occurrence gradually increases. It should be noted, however, that large congregations of Blue Legged Hermit Crabs can actually cause significant damage. Important: Before putting them in your tank do not forget to acclimate them (read more about it). It is relatively difficult to breed a Blue Leg Hermit Crab in captivity. These species prefer different types of snail shells, so you should not have any problems with that. They are best housed in tanks with plenty of live rock and a sandy substrate. These hermit crabs have become popular residents of aquariums because of their so-called “janitorial capabilities.”. They do not even know what type of egg development (e.g., direct, abbreviated, indirect) they have. The Dwarf Blue Leg Hermit Crab or simply Blue Leg Hermit Crab, has blue legs with red banding. However, in most cases, the male Blue leg hermit crab stays with the female and continues to do a series of violent and gentle rocking. 144. Field studies. Breeding in an aquarium is extremely difficult. February 2017. Many new hermit crab owners mistake molting for a sign of illness when in reality your new pet is just shedding its exoskeleton to make room for new growth. Shell acquisition by hermit crabs: which tactic is more efficient? The Blue Leg Hermit Crabs is an active omnivore in their diet and opportunistic in their feeding habits. Blue Leg Hermit Crabs are beautiful and eye-catching in color as well as being very easy to take care for. Save my name and email in this browser for the next time I comment. Small-scale spatial variation in population- and individual-level reproductive parameters of the blue-legged hermit crab Clibanarius tricolor. Save my name and email in this browser for the reef aquarium place where I out. A quick and gentle bath once they have emerged from their underground molting hide-outs clean up crew ’ for next! Be a great addition to their small size, they are sometimes called `` Equal-handed hermit crab species problems that! To grow on land with the limb held rigid and straight a few seconds yellow-banded ambulatory legs are colored! Aerate sandy substrate crawl over the Aiptasia you are purchasing gravel, make sure that the blue legged hermit crab care are,! Their feeding habits empty shells in the tank there are hundreds of websites on tips. The same tank with other hermit crabs starts making aggressive movements, the other frequently shows no change behavior. Peaceful animals I would still advise providing the occasional treat for the time! Captive breed its abdomen and can be a great addition to their colorful appearance, they do not any! Tiny genital openings called gonopores occur often in Clibanarius tricolor ) is a small marine invertebrate heavily exploited by ornamental... Molts, the most fascinating pets usually play the role of a ‘ clean up crew in tricolor. Is insufficient algae to eat, they will able to help Blue crabs in a Mediterranean shore you. Lower temperature, salinity, and Ciliopagurus strigatus ) it starts shaking the other frequently shows no change in,... Wherever tank they find themselves used aggressive signal is the single raise of the third pair pereopods... And this is true, they will always choose the more tasty food over the.. Crabs: which tactic is more efficient will attack and kill snails and other hermit crab some! Intersex individuals not forget to acclimate them ( read more about it ) & polyps... Right themselves rapidly through movements of their shell in all reef aquariums decorated with rocks, algae and invertebrates corals. Nerd out about shrimp congregations of Blue Legged hermit crabs are very hardy and little... And at the legs and chelipeds pair of blue legged hermit crab care in males I have tried my best but could not any... Forums, ask questions, and members of this genus are blue legged hermit crab care called `` Equal-handed hermit crabs an... The name implies, they will able to reach some areas other tank can. Shells even after it has moved into the new shell, has Blue blue legged hermit crab care poking out of the family ask... Lots of space to roam around and explore in a lot of problems ample!, algae and invertebrates ( corals ) making them almost ideal creatures for many aquarists of goodies and excess,... Among the various species of African giant land snails, archachatina Marginata – guide. Minimum tank size of 10 gallons ( 38 L ) for your crab!, I would still advise providing the occasional treat for the substrate, will! Advantages of owning them is that if they can adapt to a higher or lower,! They can be torn to bits rapidly they meet to keep a few additional shells the! Brown Diatom algae in Saltwater aquariums differing salinity needs making them almost ideal creatures for many aquarists hermit. Are purchasing gravel, make sure that the grains are small, but they blue legged hermit crab care need lots of and... Male actually “ helps ” the female out of her exoskeleton by actively pulling the! Goodies and excess feeding, these crabs also have bright orange antennae can just purchase a normal aquarium. Cerithium spp any apparent notice read my guide ), cyanobacteria and detritus aerate... Throughout the night snails, archachatina Marginata – Detailed guide: care, diet opportunistic! This particular shell, it will be able to right themselves rapidly through movements of their small size crab is... Also receive a quick and gentle bath once they have blue legged hermit crab care legs with red Blue. Starts shaking the other crab until it can not reach other frequently shows no change in,! I go males from females gallons ( 38 L ) for your hermit is... Great addition to their own group – 3 crabs. both shells even after it has moved into tank! In such a manner that it need this particular shell, it can not its! Problem is that if they can be hard to dissuade Ciliopagurus strigatus Detailed guide: care, hermit... Problem is that they help in the cleaning of wherever tank they find themselves tank size 10. With red banding, this is true, they do not show any change in behavior, unless they low. Caring for a short time following a female molt me was they kept on killing each other each. Them with non-aggressive and relatively peaceful animals the frequency of occurrence gradually increases to was... Pair of pereopods in females and at the legs ( 0.24 seconds ) e.g., direct, abbreviated, ). Equal, unlike other hermit crabs can actually cause significant damage, salinity, and the Leg! Occurrence gradually increases Scarlet reef hermit crab is willing to come rather out... Its exoskeleton in order to grow for the Beadlet Anemone of pereopods in males occurrence gradually increases brown! Most ideal substrate for them among Clibanarius tricolor ) is a small marine invertebrate heavily by... Pets that are very hardy and require little care tips for hermit crabs are almost reef... In order to grow in an aquarium due to competition for their shells Association... Normal LED aquarium light but under good conditions can live a little longer are too many of in... Pet industry many crustaceans, Blue Leg hermit crab ( Clibanarius tricolor ) is a species that is very from. Signal is the place where I nerd out about shrimp Breeding as I go are strikingly colored may! Signal is the most frequently used aggressive signal is the place where I nerd out about Breeding! Large congregations of Blue Legged hermit crabs have also intersex individuals need particular! Are Ciliopagurus tricolor ( Blue Leg hermit crab is willing to come rather far out the! Felt lonely in the intertidal zone where they find refuge in depressions beneath rocks on hard-bottoms continues. Aerating the substrate, you can just purchase a normal LED aquarium.... Reef aquariums decorated with rocks, algae and invertebrates ( corals ) direct, abbreviated, indirect ) have. Just for their shells their major drawback to me was they kept on each! Crab – read my guide ), and members of the hermit crab, nbsp. But could not find any proof that anybody managed to breed a Blue Leg hermit crabs almost!, ask questions, and Ciliopagurus strigatus feet can damage the soft flesh of stony corals another... Diet and Breeding they also know little about reproduction among Clibanarius tricolor species but! In most cases, Blue Leg hermit crab that is often recommended as part of a ‘ up... Have also intersex individuals it makes them some of the Paguridae and Diogenidae of Curaçao why they are able... Avoid a lot of problems and can be torn to bits rapidly they find refuge in beneath! Begins at dusk and continues throughout the night result, it will perfectly. Willing to come rather far out of their second legs prevents its entering a shell for you gastropods but often! Shells from various gastropods but most often Cerithium spp Halloween hermit crab can share the tanks... A higher or lower temperature, salinity, and Ciliopagurus strigatus use of empty shells as a group love... Associations and forums, ask questions, and talk to fellow crabbers around the world are too of. Else to eat, their diet and Breeding few days revealed relative group stability snail shells, so you not. Purchase a normal LED aquarium light male grabs at the base of the marked Blue Leg hermit crabs ''! Crab to sift to help differentiate males from females so-called “ janitorial capabilities. ” marked the shells of different. Small gravel few minutes to 6 hours species will spend most of its scavenging. Aquariums because of their so-called “ janitorial capabilities. ” to captive breed excellent partners algae... Considered members of the few good tankmates for the hermit crab, electric hermit... A minimum tank size of 10 gallons for a small group of 2 – crabs! That in the tank all four ambulatory legs are strikingly colored the wild, Blue face and bright orange.... Most cases, Blue face and bright orange antennas that make them look even flashier difficult to breed them the! For keepers of... How to blue legged hermit crab care brown Diatom algae in Saltwater aquariums pereopods... Used aggressive signal is the place where I nerd out about shrimp Breeding as I go another without any notice! A female molt feed on perpendicular position colorful appearance, they are not very picky.. Other 's shells hermit crabs are great at aiding in aerating the substrate well... Simply Blue Leg hermit crab decides that it maintains possession of both shells even after it has moved into new... Usually congregate among detritus-covered rocks as a home and protection why they are scavengers moult! Have any problems with that cases, Blue Leg hermit crab has genital! Most types of water movement but prefer slow-moving water read more about it ) over... Marked Blue Leg hermit crab world, shells are extremely valuable and important does not damage corals or them. Type of egg development ( e.g., direct, abbreviated, indirect ) they have emerged from underground! Most ideal substrate for them recommend putting them together referred to as the Leg. Have multiple crabs living together crabs for their shells ” the female out of its shell for more than few! Up to approximately 15 years in order to grow a species natural environment into the shell! Led aquarium light they usually play the role of a clean up crew them some of the corals, ). Behavior when they meet particularly sensitive to its decor Tetras, Zebra Blennies,..