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Jakesaw

Red Scarlett Hermit Crab - do I need to spot feed?

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Tired

If you don't have more than a sprinkling of algae, then yes, it's too early for cleanup crew. 

 

What are you feeding your fish? Just shut the pumps off and give him a piece of whatever it is. He'll eat it. 

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Jakesaw
12 hours ago, Tired said:

If you don't have more than a sprinkling of algae, then yes, it's too early for cleanup crew. 

 

What are you feeding your fish? Just shut the pumps off and give him a piece of whatever it is. He'll eat it. 

 

1)  Yes  - too early hindsight, I agree

 

2) Frozen brine shrimp & small pellet foods alternated.  

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Tired

Perfectly good food for hermits. Most aquarium-related foods are perfectly good for hermits. 

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Jakesaw

Added a second Red Scarlett crab today for no real reason.  Just felt like it.  

 

New crab crawled around pretty quicklly in tank.  Went to check on him and in my one cave structure - I have what looks like 2 Crabs duking it out ( old one vs new one ).  I don't know if they are mating - or if there is a fight for the bigger shell.  But it's a strange thing to see. 

 

Is this pretty common behavior for this species?  Any idea of what I should make of it?

 

These 2 are my only CUC of 10 gallon so far.  Tank is nearing 2 months old. 

 

Thanks

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DevilDuck
2 hours ago, Jakesaw said:

Added a second Red Scarlett crab today for no real reason.  Just felt like it.  

 

New crab crawled around pretty quicklly in tank.  Went to check on him and in my one cave structure - I have what looks like 2 Crabs duking it out ( old one vs new one ).  I don't know if they are mating - or if there is a fight for the bigger shell.  But it's a strange thing to see. 

 

Is this pretty common behavior for this species?  Any idea of what I should make of it?

 

These 2 are my only CUC of 10 gallon so far.  Tank is nearing 2 months old. 

 

Thanks

Yes, crabs are total jerks. They will fight/kill each other to steal the other's shell. 

I've seen it first hand, one or more crabs will attack another crab causing the loser to jump out of its shell. 

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Jakesaw

I don't know who has what shell now as I didn't watch entire fight.  But the new shell is crawling around on my rockwork.  The old shell I'll keep an eye out for. 

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Tired

Scarlet reef hermits are less aggressive, but can still get in scuffles. As long as you have enough spare shells and food, they should be fine.

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Jakesaw

I got  a crab and a spare shell in the bag.  My old crab is checking out the new shell.  Hasn't made a decision to swap real estate, but he's checking it out right now.

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Jakesaw

The move in is official.  New empty bigger shell is now crusing around my rockwork.  The old shell was left where the new shell had been placed behind the rock. 

 

Suggests the earlier fight was in fact over shell envy. 

 

My 2nd crab shell ( with crab legs sticking out ) seems to be lying down legs up - near my newly hiding Royal gramma crevace.  

 

Not sure what to make of overurned crab, but will have to keep an eye out if it moves or somehow the crab died. I really don't want to put tweezers near my 1 day old Royal Gramma as he'd probably freak out as he's getting used to his new environment and hiding all the time right now. 

 

Could a Royal Gramma kill a RS Hermit crab?

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DevilDuck
25 minutes ago, Jakesaw said:

The move in is official.  New empty bigger shell is now crusing around my rockwork.  The old shell was left where the new shell had been placed behind the rock. 

 

Suggests the earlier fight was in fact over shell envy. 

 

My 2nd crab shell ( with crab legs sticking out ) seems to be lying down legs up - near my newly hiding Royal gramma crevace.  

 

Not sure what to make of overurned crab, but will have to keep an eye out if it moves or somehow the crab died. I really don't want to put tweezers near my 1 day old Royal Gramma as he'd probably freak out as he's getting used to his new environment and hiding all the time right now. 

 

Could a Royal Gramma kill a RS Hermit crab?

 

It helps to have a variety of shells around. I have one hermit that changes shells every other day. I heard you can get shells pretty cheaply from craft stores.

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Tired

Hermits should be able to right themselves if upturned. If he's not back upright in a few hours, better flip him.

 

The trouble with scarlet reef hermits is that they're fussy about shell shape. Craft store shells can work for them, and will probably work for other hermits. Though there is the other downside that those are generally shells which were harvested alive, and killed for the shells, which is not a practice I'm very fond of.

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Jakesaw

I took the plunge and Tweezed him out.  As soon as I put hermit upright in center of tank,, he crawled into the abyss somewhere.  

 

With the shell swapping, I'm going to have to get rid of name Houdini.  The Houdini shell is empty and I don't know what crab is in what shell now.  I'm stuck in a never ending shell game.

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Jakesaw

I think I lost Houdini today.  Not totally sure which crab it was but I think it was the original.  There was some shell swapping that makes it difficult to tell. 

 

Crab was cruising along the rock last night.  Today his shell was still on rock, but there was some meaty debris hanging out of shell this morning.  When I took it out to examine, I saw crab legs at the other end.  I don't know if he just died or a bad molt. Shell is empty though.   I'll keep an eye out to see if one of the empty shells starts to move just in case it was a molt and a bare crab is moving around the tank somewhere.  

 

Edit: Does anybody know why hermits die?  

I checked my SG and I'm at 1.025.  Doesn't sound like that would be an issue

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Broseff
7 hours ago, Jakesaw said:

I think I lost Houdini today.  Not totally sure which crab it was but I think it was the original.  There was some shell swapping that makes it difficult to tell. 

 

Crab was cruising along the rock last night.  Today his shell was still on rock, but there was some meaty debris hanging out of shell this morning.  When I took it out to examine, I saw crab legs at the other end.  I don't know if he just died or a bad molt. Shell is empty though.   I'll keep an eye out to see if one of the empty shells starts to move just in case it was a molt and a bare crab is moving around the tank somewhere.  

 

Edit: Does anybody know why hermits die?  

I checked my SG and I'm at 1.025.  Doesn't sound like that would be an issue

Molting can be super stressful and lowkey dangerous. I know when I had ghost shrimp (FW) they would pick at each other during the molting process and the one molting would die. It could also be age? Never know how old hermits are unless they're super little when you buy them. 

 

I don't really question it when hermit crabs die. I just had a blue legged hermit die during a molt. He had been hiding for over a week and finally came out just to die. Found my PomPom picking at the remains. 

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Jakesaw

This guy was pretty active on the rocks prior to his death.  He'd disappear a lot, but I'd see him a couple times a day on rockwork.  He actually died on the rock.

 

I hadn't fed him beyond mild algae on my rocks in over a week.  I'm going to try and spot feed more actively every couple days to see if that stops em from dying.  I like having a couple crabs in the tank as CUC.

 

 

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Broseff
6 minutes ago, Jakesaw said:

This guy was pretty active on the rocks prior to his death.  He'd disappear a lot, but I'd see him a couple times a day on rockwork.  He actually died on the rock.

 

I hadn't fed him beyond mild algae on my rocks in over a week.  I'm going to try and spot feed more actively every couple days to see if that stops em from dying.  I like having a couple crabs in the tank as CUC.

 

 

Is there anything in the tank that might have messed with it during a molt? 

 

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Jakesaw
8 minutes ago, Broseff said:

Is there anything in the tank that might have messed with it during a molt? 

 

I have a Royal Gramma, Clownfish and one other crab that prefers to stay on the sand or climb the silicone  gaps of my aquarium.  I don't know what would have bothered him.  Saw the crab cruising the rock last night.  This morning, he was in the same spot I saw him looking strange with his meaty claw hanging out. 

 

It's a bit of a mystery to me.  

Nitrates = 0

1.026 SG

 

lack of meaty foods / nutrients was all I could come up with. 

 

 

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Tired

Lack of food is potentially a problem. 

 

You'll want to get those nitrates up, and make sure your phosphates aren't 0, to encourage the growth of non-pest algae. You want your rocks covered in a nice layer of well-behaved algae, so it's harder for pest algae to get itself established and potentially cause trouble. Corals will starve without nutrients, too.

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Broseff
1 hour ago, Jakesaw said:

lack of meaty foods / nutrients was all I could come up with. 

 

 

Yea, that could be it. 

 

Might not have been healthy enough to molt or something. 

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Jakesaw
13 minutes ago, Tired said:

Lack of food is potentially a problem. 

 

You'll want to get those nitrates up, and make sure your phosphates aren't 0, to encourage the growth of non-pest algae. You want your rocks covered in a nice layer of well-behaved algae, so it's harder for pest algae to get itself established and potentially cause trouble. Corals will starve without nutrients, too.

I've got a healthy green algae growing on my rocks and glass aquarium walls that I scrape off  Was a bit worried I got some filament on the green algae while I was getting my new fish to eat - and overfed the tank for 2 days.  Turned the white lights off for 4 days and fed sparingly to correct things.  

 

The small green fuzz went away from my rocks  To me as a newbie, it looks like a healthy tank.  

 

The green algae on rocks and wall does give off a few tiny gas bubbles during the day too as of recent.  Not sure if that means anything or not

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Tired

Sounds like a good start. Don't try to starve any algae out, though. You want nitrates no lower than 5ppm and phosphate no lower than 0.03, to make sure it's available to everything. Otherwise, pest algae that can tolerate lower nutrients has the advantage over less hardy, more desirable algae. 

 

Don't worry too much about any type of pest algae that shows up at this point. That's normal. Pest algae loves new tanks, so you should expect to see lots of it. All you need to do about filament algae is pull out any long tufts that get going, so your cleanup crew can handle it. They'll eat shorter stuff, but can't manage the long stuff. If algae is exploding wildly everywhere, maybe add a few more snails. Other than those measures, let it alone, and make sure it has nutrients. Pest algae will appear, then, assuming your cleanup crew is reasonable and your nutrients aren't too high or low, non-pest algae will slowly overtake it. 

 

Also, don't feed sparingly. Feed your fish a good amount of food, at least daily. If your nutrients get too high, correct it by doing more water changes, not feeding less. 

 

Gas bubbles can mean the algae is photosynthesizing a lot. Happy algae. 

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Jakesaw
23 minutes ago, Tired said:

 

 

Also, don't feed sparingly. Feed your fish a good amount of food, at least daily. If your nutrients get too high, correct it by doing more water changes, not feeding less. 

 

Gas bubbles can mean the algae is photosynthesizing a lot. Happy algae. 

 

Re: Snails.  I hate em.  always have, I think they are not attractive to view in tanks.  I prefer to scrap glass walls and have crabs for rock / sand.

 

Feeding - Once a day Healthy meal.  

 

My Royal Gramma is a piglet.  I feed him til he stops eating.  When full he continues to eat and spit food out and eat it again until the clown eats what RG spits out.  RG even ate my Crab cuisine earlier in the day before it could hit the sand. 

 

Note to self : Feed fish first - when they're full drop in crab cuisine. 

 

Re: Gas bubbles I'm familiar with em from planted tanks   Wasn't sure if I wanted to see em on my algae though.  But it sounds good so I'll ignore.

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Tired

You might like cerith snails, then. They spend a lot of time underground. Or maybe you could get some lightning dove snails, when ReefCleaners has them in stock? They're pretty. Hermits aren't the best for algae. Or you could see if a pet store near you has a reliable source of small tuxedo urchins, get yourself a baby, and periodically swap it out for a smaller one as it grows. Or, heck, keep a full-sized tuxedo, and give it nori to make sure it doesn't starve as it eats the algae. You'll want to research tuxedo urchins, but they are a potential solution. 

 

Or you can just have algae. There's always that option. As long as it's not smothering your corals, it's not a serious problem. 

 

Yeah, grammas are like that. As long as his belly isn't bulging too much after a meal, it's probably fine. 

 

You can use long tweezers or a turkey baster to deliver food right to the crabs, so nothing can steal them. 

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Jakesaw

Strangeness tonight.  I had left all the shells in the tank after getting a new RCH.  So I had 2 in the tank after losing one and replacing him.

 

I now again have 3 crabs in the tank.  Somehow Houdini disappeared from his shell and re-appeared again the next day.  All 3 are scurrying around the tank.    

 

What am I missing - is it normal for a crab to leave his shell for a while and come back to it the next day.  Is this the normal Molt process.  


I took out 3 or 4 red legs out of the shell and the shell appeared empty last night.  Today - IT"S ALIVE!!!!

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Broseff
28 minutes ago, Jakesaw said:

Strangeness tonight.  I had left all the shells in the tank after getting a new RCH.  So I had 2 in the tank after losing one and replacing him.

 

I now again have 3 crabs in the tank.  Somehow Houdini disappeared from his shell and re-appeared again the next day.  All 3 are scurrying around the tank.    

 

What am I missing - is it normal for a crab to leave his shell for a while and come back to it the next day.  Is this the normal Molt process.  


I took out 3 or 4 red legs out of the shell and the shell appeared empty last night.  Today - IT"S ALIVE!!!!

Legs, like front legs? 

 

If you see the very back of the hermit, it died. They have a little spiral thing that keeps them in the shell, if you see that, it's dead. 

 

But like legs, claws, all that looks super real when molting. 

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