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Brand New Crabber with Questions

Discussion in 'The Welcome Rock' started by kinndee, Jan 22, 2007.

  1. kinndee

    kinndee Guest

    Hello All!  :hello:  I'm a brand new crabber.  I have three hermit crabs, 2 small, 1 medium.  Their names are Hercules (the medium), Hermes and Princess are the small ones.  We bought a ten gal. aquarium for them to live in.  The lady at the pet store told us we could use gravel stones for them, but after doing research online, I found out thats wrong because they can't dig in it.  So we're looking for some cheap sand for them. 
    My questions include:
    1.  How big should their water bowls be?  Do they need to be big enough for all the crabs to fit in?  If the bowl needs to be big enough for Hercules to fit in, I would be afraid Princess would drown. 
    2.  How do I know they are getting enough food? It seems that Princess and Hercules are always in the dish, but I haven't seen Hermes go to the food bowl.  I'm concerned that he isn't getting enough food.
    3.  Where can I find a heating mat large enough for a 10gal tank?  All the ones I found online are little ones for few gal tanks...I put a thermometer in the tank, and its 66 in there.  I moved them closer to the heater, but I can't leave them there when we leave the house.  I have three cats who are quite curious. 
    4.  What are ways I can increase the humidity in my tank?  I have a few sponges in the tank, but is that enough?  I misted the tank this morning with a spray bottle.  Did I do that right?  I don't have a lot of money to spend on some things I saw like machines that change out the air and add humidity. 

    Any response would be greatly appreciated.  I am excited to have my crabs, and just want to take great care of them.  :petals:
     
  2. vckums

    vckums Moderator

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    Hi and welcome!

    Sand you can get at Home Depot, Toys R Us, Lowes etc. Childrens playsand is safe to use.

    Check reptile stores, Ebay or online stores(petdiscounters.com) for the heating mat. It should cost that much. You can also use reptile light bulbs.

    As for the water bowl, it should be deep enough if they want to submerge, to help smaller ones get out you can use safe rocks,shells, vines etc. I put in some smooth river rocks in mine.

    Theres a do it yourself humidifier. Theres a thread on here that tells how to make one. You can also put an airhose and get an air pump in your water bowls, that will help. Do you have a lid on the tank? An all glass lid will help keep the temp/humidity stable. Members post pictures of thier tanks in the pictures section, check out the threads and you will get alot of ideas on what you can use.
     
  3. KirbysMom

    KirbysMom Guest

    Congrats on your crabbies! This site is awesome and everyone here is so helpful. I started in July and they have helped me with almost everything!

    Gravel is definitely WRONG! They should have a substrate consisting of sand with the optional moss or EE.

    1.  How big should their water bowls be?  Do they need to be big enough for all the crabs to fit in?  If the bowl needs to be big enough for Hercules to fit in, I would be afraid Princess would drown.  
    Make sure that it can alteast hold a decent amount of water. They don't necessarily have to get in it, just usually on the edge of it and use their pinchers to pull some out. I would recommend putting sponges that you can purchase with hermit crab supplies int he bowl. They absorb the water and the crabbies drink from them so they don't drown :)

    2.  How do I know they are getting enough food? It seems that Princess and Hercules are always in the dish, but I haven't seen Hermes go to the food bowl.  I'm concerned that he isn't getting enough food.
    I don't think you need to worry about enough food, just make sure they are getting good food. I would highly recommend purchasing some food from Vikkis store. My crabbies love it and it is so much healthier for them then store baught food.

    3.  Where can I find a heating mat large enough for a 10gal tank?  All the ones I found online are little ones for few gal tanks...I put a thermometer in the tank, and its 66 in there.  I moved them closer to the heater, but I can't leave them there when we leave the house.  I have three cats who are quite curious.  
    I personally have one of those little crabby heater mat things that is only like 3" by 3" on the side of my tank. The sand must be atleast twice as deap as your largest crab and I just put my mat down so that the sand is covering it. If under your tank is open then you can place a mat on the bottom. I also have a combo light ontop of the tank. A neon light, heat light, and night light. That helps to keep the heat up as well.

    4.  What are ways I can increase the humidity in my tank?  I have a few sponges in the tank, but is that enough?  I misted the tank this morning with a spray bottle.  Did I do that right?  I don't have a lot of money to spend on some things I saw like machines that change out the air and add humidity.  
    Make sure your sand is moist enough if you have sand in there. If not then you should and it should be the consistency of sand castle sand. Misting is a great way to get it up. Also,  by covering all or most or even just half of the top of the tank it helps to increase the humidity. It keeps the moist air in so putting something on top can help :)

    That's just my little input. I would read everything everyone writes and take the most common and logical answer though. I know that I am new and am still learning :)
    Can't wait to see pics of your babies!
     
  4. CrabbyChris22

    CrabbyChris22 Hi, I'm New Here!

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    Hi and welcome to the Addiction.

    1.  How big should their water bowls be?  Do they need to be big enough for all the crabs to fit in?  If the bowl needs to be big enough for Hercules to fit in, I would be afraid Princess would drown.  

    In a perfect world the dish should be big enough for the largest crab to submerge.  Do what Vicki said (rocks, vines, etc) to keep the small ones from drowning.

    2.  How do I know they are getting enough food? It seems that Princess and Hercules are always in the dish, but I haven't seen Hermes go to the food bowl.  I'm concerned that he isn't getting enough food.


    Most likely Hermes is hitting up the food bowl late at night and you never see him at it.  Yes, if you look up near the top left of this forum you should see a section called Addiction Store.  That's Vicki's store and she has the best foods on the web.

    3.  Where can I find a heating mat large enough for a 10gal tank?  All the ones I found online are little ones for few gal tanks...I put a thermometer in the tank, and its 66 in there.  I moved them closer to the heater, but I can't leave them there when we leave the house.  I have three cats who are quite curious. 

    Petco and Petsmart have the big mats but they aren't cheap.  Check online for them and get one that's for a 10-20 gallon tank.  Lights can be used instead or in conjunction w/ the heater.  Lights help a lot, both are good.

    4.  What are ways I can increase the humidity in my tank?  I have a few sponges in the tank, but is that enough?  I misted the tank this morning with a spray bottle.  Did I do that right?  I don't have a lot of money to spend on some things I saw like machines that change out the air and add humidity.

    Wetting your playsand to sand castle consistency will help some with the humidity but another good thing (for both humidity and substrate that the crabs like) is using Echo Earth (EE) or Forest Bedding (FB).  It's coconut fiber and it comes in a brick looking thing.  You soak it in warm salt water (not table salt) and let it expand.  It grows a LOT.  If you put that in your tank you won't have any problems.  In fact you'll have a hard time keeping the humidity down for a few days after.  You can get either or both of those also at Petco/Petsmart.  Moss soaked in salt water is also a good humidity booster.  You can use what you find at a craft store, as long as it is NOT spanish moss.  In fact, look for one called Hiawatha moss.  Soak it in SW for about 20 min and then put a little pile in the tank.  My hermies love hanging out in it.  Oh, and getting a glass lid for the top of the tank is a good idea.

    Good luck, welcome and keep asking questions if you need.
     
  5. HERMEZ

    HERMEZ Moderator

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    :hello: WELCOME glad you are here with us  :teddy01:
     
  6. Crabaddict

    Crabaddict Guest

    :vinkko: Welcome aboard! :vinkko:
     
  7. kathleen

    kathleen Guest

    Welcome Kinndee.
     
  8. Joey Oh

    Joey Oh Guest

    :hello:

    Glad to have you here! 
     
  9. Jedi_sena

    Jedi_sena Guest

    Welcome, welcome.  Great crab names by the way. . . and great questions!  You're really  thinkin'! 
     
  10. *Kathy*

    *Kathy* Guest

    Hi there!  Welcome to addiction!!!! :banana:
     

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