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questions about molting, substate, and food.

Discussion in 'General questions about care.' started by crabbycrazy, Oct 27, 2011.

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  1. crabbycrazy

    crabbycrazy Hi, I'm New Here!

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    Hello everyone. I am new to the forum and to having hermit crabs and I need a little guidance.I have 1 medium (though hes def on the smaller end) purple pincher named Alfonso, who I have had for about 6 weeks, and two small purple pincher's names stripes and swirl.I am pretty sure Alfonso is getting ready to molt. He has been less active, then started digging nice little hole. he came back up for a while and I picked him up to say hi and I saw the back bubble thing they store fat in before a molt. But he has not changed shells yet and he is already too big for the one he is in! Will he go down and molt then switch shells when he realizes he really is to big for it? or is he not quite ready yet and will change shells just before he goes down for molting?

    Next,I just have sand in my ten gallon and I have about 2 1/2 inches maybe 3. Is that deep enough for him to molt in? He might not be very large but he is definably not in the small category. So far it seems like I need to add more sand. Right now he is about shell deep in the sand. Will I be causing too much stress buy moving him and all his stuff for like and hour to add more sand? I also only have some play sand to add that I borrowed from a friend who's three crabs are staying the winter with me. However it has not been cleaned or baked or anything, is it absolutely necessary that I bake it? My friend put it in her tank with out doing anything to it and everyone is fine.

    Last, I only have commercial hermit crab food. I am planning on switching to something better from the addiction store, after this runs out because while I have it I might as well use it. While its not great food they can live on it for a while, but from what Ive read Alfonso needs something better esp when he is about to molt. So I gave him what I had on hand. Some honey, peanut butter, banana, scrambled egg, and some egg shell. I don't think anybody touched it, and now I am worried he might not successfully molt because he doesn't have the proper nutrition. Is there something else I can get him that will help him molt?
     
  2. CrabAddict

    CrabAddict Moderator

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    Hi crabycrazy!

    I recommend you read through this:
    http://thehermitcrabaddiction.net/forum/index.php?topic=7742.0

    Your hermit crabs will change shells eventually. Be sure to provide them with a good assortment.

    The problem with commercial crab foods is ethoxyquin and copper sulfate. These chemical additives can cause molt deformities and possible death in hermit crabs. It wont happen immediately but will build up over time.

    Fresh, organic if possible food is best. Safe foods for hermies here:
    http://www.epicurean-hermit.com/index.php
     
  3. timebandit

    timebandit (Large Crab)

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    I have had a crab in it's shell for 2yrs. now and is way to big for it. No matter what size,shape,or amount of shells are in the tank It will not change.They will change when they want. There is not set time Yes you sand is to shallow . Your sand should cover the shell at least twice.
     
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