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Old 04-21-2010, 11:35 AM   #1
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Little White Crab HitchHiker

So I came home one night with my GF when she yelled to me 2 come quick. She saw a peice of liverock scurrying across the sand... when I got there to find this cute little white crab sitting there. Once we turned on the light it scurried off. Its alittle bigger than a quarter OR about the size of a 1/2 dollar (USD) or a loonie for all us Canadians out there. I tried feeding it a small peice of shrimp but he just berried himself in the sand... its been 3 nights I've come home and there he is and when I turn on the light he digs away and sleeps. I have pics I'm going to put up ASAP and nothing expensive in my tank yet... 1 blue devil, 1 yellowtail damsel, 2 turbo snails, 2 hermit, 1 electric blue hermit, 1 peppermint shrimp, 1 big serpent starfish (another hitchhiker) and 5 or more baby serpent starfish... but still I don't want don't want to lose anything to this little guys appetite. he hasn't shown any agression and all fish don't show any fins cliped or wiskers on the shrip still there and all arms of the brittle star are still there... any advice 4 me...?
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Old 04-21-2010, 11:45 AM   #2
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Does it have red eyes or black tipped pointed claws? If not then it SHOULD be ok. Where did the Live Rock come from?
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Old 04-21-2010, 11:58 AM   #3
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Nope it looks like black eyes and white claws like the rest of him... its more of a light light beige almost cream color. The live rock came from Fiji I have about 20 lbs of it and a 30gl tank...
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Old 04-21-2010, 12:12 PM   #4
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It may be an acropora crab then. Pictures would be the best way to tell though.
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Old 04-21-2010, 01:18 PM   #5
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I think this weekend I'm going to try and catch him to get a better pic and post the ones I have tonight...
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Old 04-21-2010, 04:00 PM   #6
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heres a write up on a white one i found just from google..ill attach the picture maybe its the same as yours

some guy replying to the identification
"Iím happy to say that this little crab is a keeper. Ninety-nine percent of the time, when people write in about hitchhiking crabs, we have to warn them about the potential risk to their livestock. This, however, is the one percent that makes for an exception. What you have is a little Acropora (commensal) crab, in the genus Tetralia. They stay small, and are actually good for the coral. Interestingly enough, in the wild, this crab protects the coral from the voracious Crown-of-Thorns sea star (Acanthaster planci). It pinches the tube feet of the star and "discourages" it from dining on the coral!"
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Old 04-21-2010, 06:16 PM   #7
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Thx Kelsey I already googled alot to try and find out what this little cutie is and it not that one... the eyes are closer together and the claws are smaller... I really appreciate the help ! ! ! I hope once I get the pictures up it will help us... I'll post the pics I have on my phone its just that my light is on and its blue soooooo... the crab looks blue. this week end I want to catch him and take a pic in day light...
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Old 04-21-2010, 09:27 PM   #8
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Well here it is ! ! !
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Old 04-22-2010, 03:13 AM   #9
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awe he looks cute. He does not look like a typical "bad crab" and Ive never heard of the bad ones burying themselves in the sand. Both of the bad crabs i had in my tank had the long hairy legs...this one seems to have shorter legs. I found one that looked just like this one but darker brown at the lfs when i was looking at the live rock. The guy working said that he was most likely not a bad crab and he put it in one of their display tanks
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Old 04-22-2010, 09:17 AM   #10
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The guy had guts!!! "HE WAS MOST LIKELY NOT A BAD CRAB", I bet he was not paying for those corals and fish in the display tank.
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Old 04-22-2010, 10:10 AM   #11
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YAY ! ! ! Sooooo I'm keeping him then. I can't wait for my next surprize to stroll out of the live rock and my GF to scream @ me to come here ! ! ! But does anyone know what kind of crab it is ???
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Old 04-22-2010, 02:34 PM   #12
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Crab Hitch Hikers
heres a link to a site with lots of hitchhiker crabs and their pictures...i didnt really see one that looked like yours but then again im just looking from your pictures. Any that resembled yours said they live in the rock....i cant find any info about crabs that burry themselves in the sand
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Old 05-03-2010, 12:10 PM   #13
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Hey sooo I've ID'ed the little guy. Its a Teddy Bear Crab... I took some more (better) pics. Its soooooooo cute but is he good... reef safe. I know its small now and not much to worry about now but later on if not feed he might attack my fish right?
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Old 05-03-2010, 12:16 PM   #14
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xanthid crab. no crabs are truly reef safe. they are opportunistic feeders. they may eat fish and/or coral down the road.
toss him in the sump if you are concerned about your livestock.
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Old 05-27-2010, 08:26 PM   #15
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Just thought I would inform you that Teddy Bear Crabs eat snails. If you didn't know so already. Pretty cute crab if I say so myself.
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Old 06-09-2010, 01:07 AM   #16
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Mystery solved! Thank you!

I am so glad I found this forum. We set up our 125 last month and have been sorta taking it slow adding items. All the rock and anemones look great! However my husband has been going nuts trying to find out why all the snails were dying. He has been testing the water twice a day, we had to buy different size snails from different stores; all this in an attempt to rule out age, bad stock, etc. Just tonight I was watching and taking a short video of what I thought was yet another snail dying. Much to my surprise I noticed a cream colored "parasite" attached to the soft part of the snail. My husband quickly pulled out the snail and a little crab fell into his palm. We let the crab drop back to the bottom and it quickly buried itself under the rock. We placed tje snail back at the top of the live rock mountian.
Within ten minutes of searching I found this thread and discovered we too have a Teddy bear crab that seems to have come in on some Fiji rock we got a little while back, and behold it had in fact been eating our snails.
What I wonder now is if this little guy likes to bury his prey?
I thought it was strange that a few of the dead snails have been nearly completly covered by our crushed coral, as though they dug a hole and buried themselves to die. Since I watched the crab burrow it made me wonder if the crab will cover his food to eat later, or to hide from other predetors.
Any ideas?

Thanks!
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Old 06-09-2010, 01:16 AM   #17
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No ideas as to the burying but your gonna want him outta there. What you should do to catch him is place a drinking glass in the tank leaning on some rock with some meaty food in the bottom. The crab goes into to eat and can't climb the slippery glass. If you put it in for a day you'll catch him.

Also have you got any fish, corals, snails, hermits or anything apart from the crab in the tank?
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