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Is ISO neccessary for molters?

Discussion in 'Molting.' started by tb1234, Oct 28, 2005.

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  1. tb1234

    tb1234 (Micro Crab)

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    I have 2 PP, one of which is showing signs of molting, yet the other just buried itself last night. [​IMG]

    I just have a 5 gallon aquarium and had planned on getting a larger one, and using the 5 gallon as an ISO when finances allow. But in the mean time, if I am about to have a molt, can I just go without the ISO? I did whack up a liter pop bottle in preparation hoping that would be sufficient.

    Thoughts?

    TIA
     
  2. moire_eel

    moire_eel "Second Molt, A Success"

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    I do not iso my molters, and have not had problems. If you are sure that your crabs are getting a balanced diet, including plenty of protein and sources of chitin, then it is probably safe to just let the crab choose its spot and molt without any additional barrier. Attacks and cannibalism tend to occur when necesssary resources (especially nutritional ones) are not available to the attacker.

    If you are not confident that your crab have been eating food that is meeting all their nutritional requirements (and many commercial foods do not) then you should isolate the molter to be on the safe side. If you can see where the crab is, you can use the soda bottle. Obviously, if you can upgrade to a 10 gallon tank for your other crab now, then the problem is solved. A 2 liter soda bottle won't leave much room for the crab above ground to move around in a 5 gallon tank. And the buried crab may pop up again in a few days -- crabs will bury for other reasons than just to molt. I have one crab that is buried virtually all the time. I wish your potential molter (or molters -- it's not uncommon for crabs to molt in groups) the best of luck!
     
  3. tb1234

    tb1234 (Micro Crab)

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    I have no clue if they are getting enough. They haven't touched anything for the last two days. I think the one dug cause I just put a UTH down there. I wrapped up the crabitat last night to try to bump it up from the 72 degree area. [​IMG] I just checked under there, and could see him move a bit, so he's still alive and kicking, as is the other one right above him in the hermie hut. He wiggles his antennae at me when I shine the flashlight in there. LOL
     
  4. gweebles

    gweebles "Preparing For First Molt"

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    Every time I ISO'ed my molters, they died. I just let them bury themselves and let nature take its course. If one decides to molt above, just iso it in a bowl with holes or a bottle cut open so he is safe but let him be.
     
  5. Felicity Loves Animals

    Felicity Loves Animals (Small Crab)

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    Yeah. You DIFFIANTLY don't need to ISO! I've NEVER ISO'd, even though I have a tank (actually, two tanks) for ISOing, and I was planning to ISO my hermies, but I got NO sign of Kanoa molting, and he JUST molted today! Pretty much before my eyes! (More info on the topic "MY HERMIE JUST MOLTED!!" in the moulting section!)
     
  6. tb1234

    tb1234 (Micro Crab)

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    Well golly!! Everywhere I read they say to iso the crab if you can! This will make life easier. LOL [​IMG]
     
  7. Felicity Loves Animals

    Felicity Loves Animals (Small Crab)

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    YEAH LOL!
     
  8. moire_eel

    moire_eel "Second Molt, A Success"

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    I think there has been a lot more interest in keeping hermit crabs in the last few years, and more people involved in the hobby means the discovery of new and often better practices.
    There are still plenty of people who isolate their crabs for molts and have good success with it, but in my opinion moving the crab causes unnecessary stress, and I can't always tell who's preparing to molt and who's digging for fun anyhow.

    Bathing is another thing that older references will suggest you do, but many people now allow their crabs to "self-bathe" in larger fresh and salt-water dishes. Doing this causes crabs less stress and people who have dicontinued bathing their crabs have tended to have fewer deaths.
     
  9. tb1234

    tb1234 (Micro Crab)

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    I've only bathed each crab twice since I got them. The first time was when I bought crab #2, and then again just a couple weeks ago when I did a deep clean in the tank. I think now that I will be getting my bigger tank set up, I will have more room for bubblers!! LOL I will put both fresh and salt water ones in and not worry about the bathing.

    What about bathing new arrivals before introducing them to the rest of the gang?
     
  10. happy_crabbies

    happy_crabbies (Micro Crab)

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    I bathe the new ones (after they have been ISO'd for several weeks)...just so they don't "smell" like a newbie in the main tank...
    Not sure if it really helps, but it has worked for me so far. [​IMG]
     
  11. gweebles

    gweebles "Preparing For First Molt"

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    I "bathe" my fresh molters in the main water dish so he smells like the rest of the others, not just like a fresh molter. Aside from that I let them be. Mine hated the baths anyhow.
     
  12. tb1234

    tb1234 (Micro Crab)

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    Excellent! Thanks so much for your replies!!
     
  13. moire_eel

    moire_eel "Second Molt, A Success"

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    I don't bathe any crab ever unless I think they might have bugs. I keep my new crabs in iso on the same type of substrate and give them the same type of food as in the main tank, so I figure that by the time they go into the main tank they smell the same. Seems to work fine -- I've never had a fight. I think the fact that my main tank is large figures into it. In my 10 and even in my 20L, I remember established crabs acting a little defensive when a new crab was added.
     
  14. Felicity Loves Animals

    Felicity Loves Animals (Small Crab)

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    Actually, when I was reading your post (tb1234), I was thinking about when introducing a hermie to the others, bathe them first, and then ask that same question LOL! I think it's a GREAT idea!
     
  15. Felicity Loves Animals

    Felicity Loves Animals (Small Crab)

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    YAY! I'm "Second Molt in Progress"!!!!! LOL
     
  16. Felicity Loves Animals

    Felicity Loves Animals (Small Crab)

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    Yeah, I have my hermit crabs a salt and fresh water dishes, and never , unless they need to be!
     
  17. kuplakrabs

    kuplakrabs "Second Molt, A Success"

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    I agree with moire_eel 100%

    With the exception of my first crabs (because I kept reading it was the thing to do) I never bathe crabs unless they have bugs/mites. I'm not sure from where the whole "need to smell the same" thing ever evolved, but my crabs have never attacked one another pre or post molt.

    My crabs live and molt in the main tank. On a rare occasion, I have had a crab go naked and I ended up ISOing him/her. During which time, I have had two molt in the ISO tank. I put them back into the main tank without a bath and I have not witnessed any of the other crabs behaving aggressively toward them. Also, when I notice a crab has resurfaced after a molt (I can follow their progress from under the tank), I haven't ever seen him/her bothered at all.

    I am more inclined to believe that lack of individual space (housing too many crabs in one tank) as well as dietary deficiencies (especially nitrogen) are more the cause for the aggressive behavior. My crabs are fed an extensively wide diet of both fresh and dry ingredients. There are only a few commercial "made for hermit crab" foods that I use. I mostly mix up my own combination of different foods each night.
     
  18. tb1234

    tb1234 (Micro Crab)

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    Excellent Wendy!! I am loving this new way (to me) of thinking!!

    What can I give them thats high in nitrogen?
     
  19. kuplakrabs

    kuplakrabs "Second Molt, A Success"

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    One excellent source of nitrogen is from the decomposition of plant and animal materials. I have purchased live crickets from the pet store and fed the dead ones to the crabs. As they die, they get put into the food dish. The crabs love them. Remember, they are scavengers in the wild.

    There is also another method that several other crabbers have had success with...it is not for the squeemish at heart though. Purchase a few feeder fish and place them in a bowl of aquarium salted water until the "go belly up" and then feed them to your crabs. I usually wait until the next day so the decomposing process is well underway. If you can't bring yourself to follow this method, you can purchase frozen silversides available at most larger pet stores.

    The lack of nitrogen in the captive crabs diet is thought to attribute to aggressive behavior as well. Providing a very extensive diet for them is essential to keeping them alive and healthy in captivity.
     
  20. tb1234

    tb1234 (Micro Crab)

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    Wow.........this is totally new to me!! Makes sense though.

    Wonder if the petstore would just give me dead crickets? LOL
     
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