There are a few reasons why pink hermit crabs should be on your must have list for the fall season. They are beautiful to look at, fun and very tactile and attractive to the eye. However, you may be asking yourself if it’s safe for them to be in your home. The answer is yes, as long as you follow some safety procedures.
The number one reason that hermit crabs should be added to your “must have” list for this fall season is safety. Crabs can be carriers of viral diseases like ring worm and pathogenic bacteria. These parasites are transferred by means of their fecal matter that can be easily ingested by humans or animals. By making sure that you only buy hermit crabs that have been passed along the family by a previous owner, you can help prevent the introduction of these potentially deadly worms.
You need to use caution when handling pink hermit crabs. These creatures are highly defensive and will often times sting and bite to defend themselves. If you accidentally step on one of these crabs, they may react by scratching and then developing an itchy rash. These types of behaviors are normal and only indicate that the crab is defending itself. In no way is the crab biting you!
Another reason pink hermit crabs should be on your must have list for the fall is to prevent escapes. When crabs feel unsafe or unconfined in their home they will often leave their aquarium and make their way into the outdoors. This is often when disease can spread quickly. You can help to prevent the spread of any diseases by maintaining proper nutrition and water quality throughout the year.
If you do decide to offer pink hermit crabs to your family and friends, be sure to provide a healthy diet and a clean tank. These creatures love to consume algae and other foods that can help to supplement their diet. However, you should try to provide a good amount of protein in the form of meat, fish, or other foods. The algae is what gives these crabs their softiness and if you cut too much algae the animals will simply die.
These adorable crabs require little maintenance once you get them home. The biggest upkeep task is providing clean water. To make sure your water is clean remove any excess algae and dead sea creatures daily. There is nothing more frustrating than cleaning up the remains of fallen marine life only to find dead crabs inside the tank. You can also purchase pearl plugs to place in the water periodically to help prevent clogging of the tanks filtration system. Although pink hermit crabs are very durable and hardy, they still do require a bit of TLC from time to time.
The ideal situation is to have at least one tank exclusively for these creatures. When you have more than one tank set up, it is best to use a type of filter to help control the nutrients entering the other marine tanks. A general rule is that the larger the aquarium the more powerful the filter must be. In addition to helping to keep the nitrates and phosphates (PVC) under control, this powerful filter will also keep the blooms of these crabs alive. The blooms provide the beautiful contrast between pink and green shells and the filtered water will not become overly toxic to the crabs.
In order to maintain health of your hermit crabs you should provide them with plenty of nutritious, safe water to live in. They will need to spend some of their time outside the tank because the cold temperatures will reduce their body temperature. Supplement your tank with coral rock and tiny plants as they spend a lot of time basking in the sunlight in the daytime. If you want to give your crabs a bit of variety, it is a good idea to have a variety of shrimp, rock and corals that you can add to the tank at different times of the year. Finally, the crabs will really enjoy playing with the small toys that you provide to them during the winter months.