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Molting?

Discussion in 'Molting.' started by lovelylivelycrabs, Oct 6, 2009.

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  1. lovelylivelycrabs

    lovelylivelycrabs "Preparing For First Molt"

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    Is Franklin molting?
    As soon as I got him home from the beach a couple months ago, he's stayed buried under the food dish. I thought he was just destressing, but does it usually take that long? I cleaned my tat yesterday and picked him up and he was pale, and buried himself in the paper towels when I stuck him in the empty aquarium. My mom wanted to take Franklin and Eleanor to school (they were bought for her classroom) but I don't want to dig him up if he's molting. How long should a molt for a small crab take?
     
  2. cloie74

    cloie74 "Second Molt, A Success"

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    Oh! you should never dig up a buried crab.
    It can take them some time to molt especially after coming from bad conditions at the pet store like inadequate humidity and diet.
    If he was pale he probably has molted but his exo has not re-hardened. Where is he now?
    Be careful of your other crabs getting at him if he DID in fact molt then they may go after him.
    When you dug him up did you see his Exo anywhere? I hope you didnt toss it because he needs to eat that to get strong. If he molted he will have hairy legs and sharp pints at the end of his claws.

    Here are some questions to help find out better what is going on:
    What do you have in the bottom of your tank? Sand? How deep is it?
    Do you offer Marine salt water (What Brand?)and Fresh purified water?
    Do you offer calcium?
    What do you feed them?
    What size tank?
    Glass or plastic?
    How do you heat it?
    Do you have Heat/Humidity gauges? If so what are they at?
     
  3. lovelylivelycrabs

    lovelylivelycrabs "Preparing For First Molt"

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    I didn't realize that. :( Sorry Franklin!
    My crabitat was getting fruitflies and kind of a musty odor, so I thought I needed to clean it. I had it since August and never cleaned it.
    No, I didn't see his exo.
    I have Eco Earth Coconut fiber bedding, probably about 3-4 inches deep, they have cuttlebone available, I feed them various things, like baby salad shrimp, salmon, sardines, grapes, apples, dried unsweetened banana chips, raw broccoli, baby corn, cauliflower, peanut butter, baby carrots, slivered almonds (blanched unsalted), peanuts (blanched unsalted), mushrooms (white button), and kiwi so far, but I'm always trying to find new things for them. I check them against the list at hermitcrabcuisine.com . I'm working on getting them saltwater, I just have to get to petco... I saw a thing of Aquarium Pharmaceuticals salt for $4 or a bag of Instant Ocean salt for $6. It's currently a 10 gal (glass), but I'm getting a much bigger one (50 gal long acrylic) around christmas. I have an under tank heater, and my temp and humidity gauges are on the upper right inside corner. I also use distilled water.

    I know I really need salt water. Which brand is best/most trusted?
     
  4. cloie74

    cloie74 "Second Molt, A Success"

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    That smell you were probably smelling is the molt, it gets like a chemical smell almost, dead crab smells like rotting fish and is REALLY nasty right away.
    I prefer Oceanic Natural Marine Sea Salt, you can get it at Petco for about $5 1.5 tsp makes 1 cup so it lasts a long time.
    Sounds like you have a good set up minus the salt water ;)
    I know it is REALLY hard to let them be, my 12 year old is always trying to find his "eternal molter" We got this crab that just likes to be buried, he comes up and eats and goes back down for days at a time. He is still destressing we have only had him 3 weeks but it is so hard for my son to just leave him be, but it is better for the crab.

    Has your crab gone back under?
     
  5. emmac350

    emmac350 "Fourth Molt In Progress"

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    Instant Ocean and Oceanic are the best that I've seen. I'll put a link at the end of the post to a page on CSJ about what mix to use.

    Do the baby salad shrimp have tails? If not, you should consider buying a jar (at the pet store) of dried baby shrimp so they can get the chitin from the shells.

    If you're considering getting an acrylic tank, do look into how to heat it - traditional heating methods meant for glass tanks can very easily melt/warp the acrylic and release toxic fumes.
     
  6. lovelylivelycrabs

    lovelylivelycrabs "Preparing For First Molt"

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    That smell was the molt? Oh! That makes sense. The fruitflies didn't have anything to do with the smell, did they?
    Franklin has buried himself back in his favorite hiding spot, thankfully.
    No, the shrimp don't have tails. I just realized that, I know they need chitin but I didn't notice the shrimp were exoskeleton-less. :)
    Thanks for the heads up on the heating for acrylic. That could have been a disaster!
    CSJ? What's that?:confused:


    Do Hermies have any preference that you've seen about fresh food v dried food? The foods get kind of moist in the 'tat overnight, so they can snip off pieces easier I think.

    Is it best to have a temperature gradation in the tank or keep it all the same temp? How would I keep it the same if I did? I have a UTH on one side with a big water dish over top to increase humidity, my sponge got moldy so I decided I didn't need it. The water isn't deep enough for the little ones to drown. Anyway, they seem to shy away from that side, usually hanging out on the cool side.

    Does anyone know what types of heating and lights are okay for acrylic aquariums? I've been searching EVERYWHERE and I can't seem to get an answer.
     
  7. emmac350

    emmac350 "Fourth Molt In Progress"

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    Sorry - forgot the link! CSJ is the CrabStreetJournal site, and they have a wealth of really good hermie research from a bunch of dedicated long-time hermie owners.

    Temperature gradation is good - each crab has a temp they like better. My PP Spaz basks under the moon glow bulb at night, whereas Rack won't go near it. The cooler end shouldn't be below 70, and the warmer end shouldn't be above 83. Try to have a hidey on each temperature end just in case, although you should discourage digging over a UTH.

    Fresh v. dried - mine seem to like dried better for the most part, although there are foods they prefer fresh. When I offer a cooked shrimp (with an extra piece of shrimp skeleton...save those and cook them in the microwave with some water until they're pink), it usually gets dragged around, as does the pork. But they don't usually go for uncooked fresh squash/eggplant whereas the dried versions usually end up in the sand. I always offer a full diet of dried and then supplement with fresh for now, maybe someday I'll be able to offer a full diet of fresh, but not yet!

    Here's the link - What ocean water mix should I use? - FAQ -General Hermit Crab topics - News & Articles : The Crab Street Journal
     
  8. lovelylivelycrabs

    lovelylivelycrabs "Preparing For First Molt"

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    Oh thanks emmac350! That's really helpful! :)
     
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