• Welcome to The Salty Box, a forum to discuss everything related to Marine & Reef Fish keeping in a friendly surrounding.

    Your voice is missing! You will need to register to be able to join in discussions with others.

    We hope to see you as a part of our community soon

Red Legged Hermit Crab


Just over a week ago I was upset to find my Hermit Crab seemingly stuck between some of the barnacle shells I have in tank, so i tried to pick it up to move when I noticed that the legs and body were hanging out of shell with no movement visible, bit like the Monty python parrot I had a dead Crab, I was bit sad as I'd had it since the Orb.
Thinking I will sort out a new one from my lfs i left shell in tank thought no more of it till today when a beautiful set of Red legs were dangling out of shell and Crabby was tucking into a bit of prawn.
So my question is do Crabs like Shrimps cast and grow but surely the crab just moves shells like he has done in the past.
Last edited:


When a hermit grows it will shed. It will also look for a slightly bigger shell. It is completely normal for them to shed and also switch shells. They usually shed when either they find a new home to move into and then they cast their exo skeleton expand and the soft shell re hardens and then the crab has got bigger.

It is strange though if you have had the redleg a while how you havent seen a skeleton shed before.... mine do it bleedin constantly and i must find 2 sheds a week also my shrimps do it ofen too.... i also find i usually have one less snail but a crab with a big grin on its face and a plush new abode.... at the cost of the life of another mexican turbo snail Hysterical


Yes this is how they grow hermit crabs grow then shed there skin & grow again this is why you need to keep up with bigger shells for him to move on too.


Ta guys, yep we have had him move up 3 shell sizes but i have never had whole crab deposited . Like you say we get it lots with the shrimps but they look empty , I honestly thought the little guy had bit the dust, but happy to have him back will buy some bigger shells he's in the biggest one now .