Common and Unique Hermit Crabs You'll Encounter on the Beach
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Common and Unique Hermit Crabs You'll Encounter on the Beach

Here are some notable and common hermit crabs species you might find and encounter the next time you go to the beach.

Have you been to the beach recently? Have you noticed those quick and fast crawling creatures that would play dead the moment you attempt to catch them? These creatures are called “hermit crabs”. They live on empty shells and will eventually abandon the shell when they grow larger and will find a larger shell to occupy. Their sizes range from small, medium to large. There are many species of hermit crabs in the world. They are fun to catch and play with. Just be careful with the large ones because they can hurt you painfully with their claws. The last time I was on the beach, I was able to capture 30+ and my kids truly like and enjoyed them.

Here are some notable and common hermit crabs species you might find and encounter the next time you go to the beach.

1.) Petrochirus diogenes 

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Scientific name: Petrochirus Diogenes

Feature: A giant marine hermit crab that will attack and eat a conch

Range: Caribbean Sea

Occupied shell: Conch shells, Eustrombus gigas

Diet: Conch

2.) Coenobita brevimanus 

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Scientific name: Coenobita brevimanus

Feature: A land hermit crab

Range: East coast of Africa and the southwest of Pacific Ocean

Weight: Up to 230 g

3.) Blueband Hermit Crab

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Scientific name: Pagurus samuelis

Range: From the west coast of North America, and the commonest hermit crab in California.

Feature: It is a small species with distinctive blue bands on its legs.

Occupied shell: Shell of the black turban snail

Diet: Algae and carrion

Size: grows up to 4 cm in length with carapace width of up to 1.9 cm

Color: the exoskeleton is brown or green, antennae are red

4.) Pagurus prideaux 

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Scientific name: Pagurus prideaux 

Habitat: Shallow waters

Range: Northwest coast of Europe

Features: Lives symbiotically with the sea anemone Adamsia palliate/ Its rather wider than it is long and has several tufts of short bristles

Color: Its carapace is brownish-red with paler patches.

Size: It can reach a length of 1.4 cm

5.) Hairy Hermit Crab

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Scientific name: Pagurus hirsutiusculus

Range: Lives from Bering Strait to California and Japan

Color: Range in color from olive green to brown to black with white and often also blue bands on the walking legs.

Feature: It is identifiable with the remarkable amount of hair covering its body.

Size: Grows up to 1.9 cm long

Habitat: Tide pools with sand or rock, and under rocks, logs, and seaweed

6.) Small Hermit Crab

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Scientific name: Diogenes pugilator

Range: Coast of Angola as far as the North Sea and eastwards through the Mediterranean Sea, Black Sea and Red Sea

Size Carapace of up to 5.45 mm 

7.) Clibanarius erythropus 

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Scientific name: Clibanarius erythropus

Habitat: Rockpools and sublittoral waters

Range: Mediterranean Sea, Black Sea and eastern Atlantic Ocean

Size: Grows up to 1.5 cm in length

8.) Coenobita cavipes 

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Scientific name: Coenobita cavipes

Range: Eastern part of Africa, Philippines, China, Malaysia, Taiwan, Polynesia and Micronesia

Occupied shell: Uses turbo shells

9.) Coenobita rugosus 

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Scientific name: Coenobita rugosus

Feature: A land hermit crab

Range: Australia, East Africa to southwest Pacific

Color: Common colors include green, brown and tan, but black, white, pink, and blue

Size: 1.5 cm in length

Diet: plants, dead fish, fruit

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Comments (4)

Educational and well composed.Digg.

enjoyed this - digged and stumbled

I really enjoyed this! It's fun...

I never realized there were so many kinds of hermit crab. Excellent article!

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