Crabs are amazing creatures that live both on land and water. They are a type of crustacean like lobsters, prawns and shrimps. They have thick shells that act like armors to protect them from instant danger. The two claws in front are also armored and they use them to catch their prey.
Fact 1: There are nearly 6,700 types of crabs found in different places of the world and they are divided into 93 groups of crabs. It has been found that most of the species prefer the shallow ocean waters where there are rocky pools and coral reefs. There are fresh water crabs too that live in lakes and rivers while there are some that love to spend their time on the land.
Fact 2: Structure of the crabs – A typical crab has 10 jointed legs, 2 stalking eyes, gills for breathing, exoskeleton or the hard shell and they do not grow more than 40cm. However, the Japanese spider crab is more than 4m long whereas the smallest one is the pea crab that grows only a few mm.
Fact 3: Nature of Crabs – The ideal places where crabs are found are the sea shores where they constantly adjust with the high and low tides. Since they can breathe both under water as well as when they are out of the water, they do not have any problems of existence. They cope well with dangers from land, air and sea as birds, fish and also human hunt them for food. The armored shell is their greatest defense from predators. They smartly hide themselves especially during the day by burying themselves in mud and sand.
Fact 4: Varieties of Crabs – The variety of crabs available around the globe is surely a wonder. Here are some of the exotic species of crabs:
- Striped Shore Crab commonly found on the west coast of America are omnivores and eats whatever it finds like algae, mollusks, clams, worms as well as fungi.
- Rock Crab or Maine Crab are seen on the eastern coast of America and are good to eat.
- Swimming crabs are also very palatable.
- Blue Swimmer Crab lives mainly in river estuaries and is mostly seen in Asia and Australia.
- Oceanic Crabs were discovered by Christopher Columbus in the Atlantic Ocean and feeds on invertebrates and algae. The Brown Pacific Weed Crab and Blue Pacific Weed Crab are found in the Pacific waters.
- Red King Crabs are found in Alaskan water and also North Pacific Ocean and is a great source of food for the people there.
- Japanese Spider Crab is also a deep sea crab and can live below 600m deep water.
- Coconut Crabs and Halloween Crabs are huge crabs that live entirely on land. These often invade lands like the Caribbean countries during annual migration.
- Freshwater crabs as the name suggests prefer the fresh waters as their home. They are seen in the flowing streams and billabongs of Australia as well as in all other continents. But since they are eaten by humans, these freshwater crabs have become an endangered species and are about to become extinct.
Fact 5: The Giant Robber Crab has been located through the GPS in its natural habitat in the Indian Ocean and the Pacific Ocean. It is the largest living arthropod of the world and can open and have full coconuts. It weighs 4kg and its leg span is about 1m. It is known to live for about 60 years. However, sufficient information about this species is not available yet.