1. This site uses cookies. By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. Learn More.

Crabs keep dying

Discussion in 'Emergency Care - 911.' started by Jennifer Leatherwood, Sep 12, 2005.

Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.
  1. Jennifer Leatherwood

    Jennifer Leatherwood (Micro Crab)

    Joined:
    Mar 20, 2005
    Messages:
    66
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    massachusetts
    Hi everyone, I am having a big problem keeping my crabs alive. I can't figure it out. Over the last few months I have lost 15-20 crabs. It seems they go down to molt and just die. I did have mites but I got the hypos and that seemed to clear them up. For a while every time I dug up a dead crab there was mites all over the dead crab. But now they just keep dying, not new crabs either these are crabs I've had for a while and have already been through a couple of molts. I just can't figure it out. It seems as though this has all started when I put my A.C. in this summer. The temp and hum are both between 70 - 80. Another weird thing is I had a crab go naked and he ended up dying but the next day I found another freshly molted crab, (still soft and pink) in that shell but there was not an empty shell. Its like he came up freshly molted with out a shell and went into this shell. And to make it even more weird he hasn't move away from this spot since he came up a week ago, he's right by the water. Anyone have any suggestions as to what could be going on in my tank?
    Jenn
     
  2. Jennifer Leatherwood

    Jennifer Leatherwood (Micro Crab)

    Joined:
    Mar 20, 2005
    Messages:
    66
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    massachusetts
    2 more dead, any suggestions welcome?
     
  3. MyCrabsr2kool

    MyCrabsr2kool Hi, I'm New Here!

    Joined:
    Oct 3, 2004
    Messages:
    9
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    ILL
    Have you tryed to do a tank cleaning? I mean everything in the tank? what do u use in the tank(sand or EE)? Do u take y'r crabs out alot and hold them I have found that people how do this tend to lose alot of crabs. I very rarly mess with my crabs only when i change the tank around or add new stuff to it.
     
  4. Jennifer Leatherwood

    Jennifer Leatherwood (Micro Crab)

    Joined:
    Mar 20, 2005
    Messages:
    66
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    massachusetts
    I haven't done a deep cleaning yet, because I have too many down molting. I use an EE/sand mix. And I never mess with my crabs I just watch them, and all of a sudden they are dropping like flies. I have had this tank set up since May and for the first 3 or 4 months everything was great then around Aug they just started dying. I dont know what to do.
    Jenn
     
  5. crab*grrl

    crab*grrl Hi, I'm New Here!

    Joined:
    Mar 29, 2005
    Messages:
    8
    Likes Received:
    0
    Jennifer,
    The Grim Reaper has been visiting my crabitat frequently this summer too. Not really sure why. Mine tend to slow down and then just die a couple days later, sometimes after leaving the shell and sometimes not. I haven't had a mite problem but the deaths are unexplainable. I wondered if maybe there was some bacteria or slow-moving crab disease, and I moved the remaining ones to the 10-gal ISO. While in the Iso 2 of the remaining 9 molted and did fine, while one died. I did a deep clean of the 40g breeder, got all new substrate, boiled everything in it, and threw out all the wood items in there that I didn't trust could be thoroughly cleaned with boiling. I use a sand/EE mix. Since I've put them all back in the main crabitat, the remaining 8 seem to be fine but I've lost I think 8 crabs in the last couple months, and they were crabs I'd had for a little while too. I lost 2 straws, 2 Indos, 3 Rugs, and 1 PP. I hope the deep clean will help curb the deaths. I wouldn't advocate digging up molters, but if you're losing them all post-molt anyway, you might consider carefully transferring them to an ISO and doing a deep clean, replacing all the substrate etc, and then returning them to the main crabitat. There may be something in the main crabitat that is killing them in their weakened molting state and leaving them in there isn't working for you so I don't think you'd have much to lose.
    When transferring my crabs back to the main crabitat I did actually dig up my littlest one, Plankton, right after he had freshly molted (he had just been on the surface a day or so before and I didn't expect him to molt!). I left him in the Iso right where I had dug him up and when I saw little crabby tracks in the sand I put him back too and he appears to be just fine, so far so good.
     
  6. moire_eel

    moire_eel "Second Molt, A Success"

    Joined:
    Dec 14, 2004
    Messages:
    524
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Houston, TX
    I am so sorry -- that is a scary number of deaths. I agree that doing a deep-clean even if you have molters may be warranted here - the benefits could outweigh the risks. I had to break down my tank to move a few months ago even though half my crabs were buried. It turned out only one of them was freshly molted, and I popped him in an iso with his exoskeleton and he finished up just fine. So just have a few isos ready!

    A few other questions come to mind. You've probably thought about most or all of these already.

    When were new crabs last added to your crabitat? I think that sometimes a crab can be a carrier of something they themselves are not affected by. I have added new crabs before, only to lose a couple of establised crabs soon after. Think of how the American Indians died in large numbers when Europeans first arrived in North America. Our crabs come from populations spread around the world that would normally never have contact. (Another theory there could be that adding new crabs causes stress.)

    Have you added any other new items to your tank, or changed your tank routines -- a new food, new water source, etc.?

    Has the weather changed where you are?

    If you have a digital gauge, have you changed the batteries recently? I have had some gauges that read way wrong when their batteries are going. If you have analog gauges, have you calibrated them recently?

    Have any chemicals been used in or near your house recently?

    Have you gotten any other new pets recently - reptiles in particular?

    Where and when did you get the crabs that are dying? Maybe they're finally succumbing to stress even though it has been many months.

    I think the number of deaths you're seeing makes it more likely that this a disease or
    contaminant rather than just stress.
     
  7. Jennifer Leatherwood

    Jennifer Leatherwood (Micro Crab)

    Joined:
    Mar 20, 2005
    Messages:
    66
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    massachusetts
    HI guys,
    Thanks for the suggestions. The problem is that I can't move them to an iso to clean because all 20 of my crabs are burried except one who is very lethargic. I can't figure this out because I know they are not molting they come up to eat. Its so weird. What would cause all of them to go under instead of staying on top/ none of them climb anything anymore. Why would crabs go under, if it was too hot, but it's not. It seems to be between 70-80 at substrate level at all times. Maybe I should get a digital guage and one of those temperature regulators.
    Jenn
     
  8. moire_eel

    moire_eel "Second Molt, A Success"

    Joined:
    Dec 14, 2004
    Messages:
    524
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Houston, TX
    I bet that they have buried because they know something in the environment is wrong. It could be tank conditions (say if your gauge was mis-calibrated) but I think it would also be a good instinct if a communicable disease was present. I would leave them buried - maybe if it is disease, some of them will escape infection that way. It's probably not feasible to set up 20 isos. [​IMG] I am so sorry.
     
Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.

Share This Page