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Old 11-03-2004, 09:14 AM   #1
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Hermit crabs - Do they shed their skin?

I woke up this morning to find one of my red-legged hermits half torn to pieces next to his shell. I picked the shell out of the aquarium, and got rid of the body.

I have since put the shell back in the tank, to find the hermit still in his shell.

I initially thought it was another hermit taking his shell, but I've done a count up and all 3 hermits are present and correct.

So what was the red fleshy body I threw away this morning? Possibly from my cleaner shrimp? Although it didnt look like a cleaner, it was far smaller.

Any thoughts... Thanks
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Old 11-03-2004, 09:33 AM   #2
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They're shedding their skin to grow. Shrimp will do that too. If it was the crab, you shuld be able to distinguish the legs and what looks like flesh attached to it.

Sooner or later they might need some larger empty shells to move into. Or they may attack your larger snails if you have any for new homes someday.
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Old 11-03-2004, 09:34 AM   #3
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The "red fleshy body" was a molt from the hermit crab. They will do this quite regularly as they grow. They shed their exoskeleton as a new one grows in underneath.

You should also make sure you have some extra shells in the tank for the hermits to move into as they continue to grow.
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Old 11-03-2004, 10:02 AM   #4
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lol an echo.... thanks anyways guys!
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Old 11-03-2004, 10:45 PM   #5
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every crustaceans got to do it to grow
next time that happens leave the exoskeleton in their. It may not be much but its a good calcium source because the new skeleton is soft the hermit will eat it for calcium. This isnt a necessity but it will save your hand from getting wet.
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