Help please

Questions about detached legs or claws.
Post Reply
jjd531
Zygote
Zygote
Posts: 4
Joined: Sun Jul 23, 2017 3:05 pm
Gender: Male
Hermit crabs: 4
Total gallons: 10
Total tanks: 1

Help please

Post by jjd531 »

I have had a string of odd crab deaths since I got my tank set up two or three months ago and I'm still having problems. Being somewhat of a newbie I really went through a lot of information to make sure I did everything right, and I really think I have. But Anyways, after getting four crabs from the beach we got a 10g glass tank and enough sand for a few inches of substrate, which is now up to 5 or 6 in, I also made sure to get salt water maker which is for hermit crabs and spring water for their freshwater, saltwater making, and mistings. The tank has a small 4 watt UHT heater on the bottom and a large UHT on the back wall, it was the other way around till I decided the substrate was getting too warm. The tank as of now keeps temps of low to mid 70's, to low and barely to mid 80s. the humidy stays about mid 70s sometimes going a little closer to 70. Also my substrate is reptile calcium sand mixed with coco fiber. The first one that died became very lethargic and eventually died. a few days later another crab was missing a leg and later lost another before she died. After these two died things seemed to be going good with my other two so I decided to get two more crabs these ones were larger but seemed pretty healthy when I got them maybe a few weeks after getting them one came out of it's shell and I tried method after method to try to get it to go back in and nothing worked i offered it 3 suitable shells to live in but she would not take one, I eventually isolated her in the tank and nursed her for about 3 days hoping she'd go into a shell but she finally passed :(. I later had one of my beach crabs get pretty lethargic and pass also. Leaving me with my current two crabs but wait there's more. The two I have left, one from the pet store one from the beach, one was buried in the sand for a while and I thought he was maybe molting but eventually came up and was missing his large claw, but still seemed perky and healthy. After he came up I cleaned the tank because of the 4 that had died, because I had no other cause and ended up buying another 40$ worth of sand for essentially no reason, after cleaning the tank which was day before yesterday my other crab lost his big claw too and seems like he may not make it. PLEASE HELP ME FIGURE OUT WHAT I'M DOING WRONG, I really don't want to see another crabby die it's so sad.
Also some things to note:
I have looked for mites and I have looked multiple times and ruled out mites as a cause.
I clean my water dishes every couple days and always provide spring water, I clean my toys and dishes with tap water but try to shake them off well and dry before I put them back in.
I always try to provide a range of food for them too, offering fruits and vegetables along with store sold hermit crab food that's powdery.
They have a net that they don't really use which takes them to a second level of the tank I made, they also have a climbing wall along the back which they barely use. They have two hiding places one that is a cave previously in my fish tank, and the other was from a hamster cage and is a plastic strawberry that I cut the bottom out of so they could dig under it I also made sure to try to sand parts that I cut or that were chewed by the hamster so that they were smooth. They also have a good range of shells to choose from. I also have made sure to not include anything toxic such as certain woods or anything metal
I'm really at a loss for what I'm doing wrong I am sadly feeling ready to throw in the towel on my crabitat after my last two pass :( I really enjoy keeping them but it's sad and frustrating the money invested into this and poor little crabs that died. Any advice would be greatly appreciated, I can provide further details if needed, thanks
User avatar
Wai
Administrator
Administrator
Posts: 2822
Joined: Mon Nov 01, 2004 2:12 pm
Gender: Male
Hermit crabs: 4
Total gallons: 45
Total tanks: 1
Location: Melbourne
Contact:

Re: Help please

Post by Wai »

How is your temperature and humidity? What type of crabs have you been taking from the beach? Surely they aren't marine hermit crabs? Do you have any photos of your tank and crabs that you can share? Don't use the store hermit crab food. Get yourself some organic muesli and give them that for now and add some meat (raw or cooked without adding anything such as salt or sauce).
Wai
Image
User avatar
aussieJJDude
Zoea V
Zoea V
Posts: 425
Joined: Fri Mar 02, 2012 7:30 pm
Gender: Male
Hermit crabs: 8
Total gallons: 65
Total tanks: 2
Location: Melbourne, Australia

Re: Help please

Post by aussieJJDude »

Things that may be causing problems in my eyes:
- reptile sand... this tends to cump and harden like cement, which can kill a crab. Instead, swap it out for play sand, which is cheap, easy to find and safe.
- what salt water do you use? hermit crab salts are basically overpriced table salt. look into purchasing marine salts designed for marine aquaria
- do you dechlorinate the spring water? with what?
- id suggest trying to get the tank to around 80F IMO, and humidity around 80%

to me it honestly sounds lkke they have PPS, sometimes the trip from the wild to the store, then to home is too much fpr the little ones and they can pass away. Often they drop limbs in the process. Keeping the tank ideal can help reduce the effects, but a lot of the time they too far gone that no amount of TLC will fix the damages.
246L/65G - 'Tidal Jungle' (Crabs) | 246L/65g - 'Backwater Pool' (Fish/Snails) | 96L/25G - ''Twisted Minds" (Fish/Snails/Shrimp) | 300L/90G Fancy Pond (Goldfish)

I've never had any problems with 'Impulse Buying'. They're just animals that I forgot I had planned to get.
jjd531
Zygote
Zygote
Posts: 4
Joined: Sun Jul 23, 2017 3:05 pm
Gender: Male
Hermit crabs: 4
Total gallons: 10
Total tanks: 1

Re: Help please

Post by jjd531 »

I just buy gallons of water from the grocery store, does that need to be dechlorinated? And the brand of salt water maker i get is all living things and says on the bottle that it helps neutralize things found in tap water but I use the spring water from the grocery store anyways, also the saltwater maker is liquid and you mix like a tbs with like 8oz of water if that helps, and it says it also contains calcium. I've heard that play sands can contain harmful fillers, where do you purchase yours? Also another reason I've ruled out my sand, which I've also heard about the reptile sand clumping and killing them, is because my one crab the only one alive now is always digging in it and seems to love to play under the sand none of the other ones really dug around like he does. And to answer the first question they were purple pinchers, they were selling them on the boardwalk, but I did play with a little hermit crab we found in the ocean. Also i don't just feed hermit crab food i give them two shells of food, one with just hermit crab food and egg shell peices broken up and the other with fresh cut fruits and vegetables such as carrots and apples and whatever else is in the house. My temp has been keeping mid 70s to 80s and my humidity is low to mid 70s
jjd531
Zygote
Zygote
Posts: 4
Joined: Sun Jul 23, 2017 3:05 pm
Gender: Male
Hermit crabs: 4
Total gallons: 10
Total tanks: 1

Re: Help please

Post by jjd531 »

Also i would share photos but I'm not really sure how on here can i just copy and paste them? And thanks for the advice I'll try switching to salt water mix that's made for aquariums I need more anyways. I actually have a freshwater aquarium, could my stress coat stuff be used to dechlorinate water and remove Metals? or would you suggest just getting dechlorinator?
jjd531
Zygote
Zygote
Posts: 4
Joined: Sun Jul 23, 2017 3:05 pm
Gender: Male
Hermit crabs: 4
Total gallons: 10
Total tanks: 1

Re: Help please

Post by jjd531 »

@aussieJJDude
User avatar
ladybug15057
Coenobita
Coenobita
Posts: 3098
Joined: Mon Mar 03, 2008 4:12 am
Gender: Female
Hermit crabs: 82
Total gallons: 305
Total tanks: 7
Location: Southwestern Pa., U.S.

Re: Help please

Post by ladybug15057 »

The salt water mix should be one for salt water fish, not freshwater.
For pictures you could make an online photo folder and link to it here for us to see.
I believe there is still a good food list in the crab care section one can offer their hermies.
Stresscoat is a dechlorinator, but it has slime slime additives to it for fish gills. If yu're buying bottle water anyway, I would suggest to buy the distilled bottle water. (I have been doing that for over 15 years now) no worries of how to mix just add it to their ponds. Make sure to offer the proper ocean salt to add the minerals they need in their diet, as well as proper foods.
Welcome to HCP!
Marie (aka ladybug15057)

If you are contacted privately (via pm or e-mail) and enticed to join another forum, please contact a Crab Crew member. This is an unethical practice.
Post Reply