Crabs in the aquarium content


Types of aquarium crabs

Aquarium crabs are popular inhabitants of home aquariums. Many species of crabs are not recommended to keep with fish and other crustaceans. Crabs live mainly in the salty water of the oceans and seas. There are freshwater species that can be bred at home.

The content of the crab is possible both alone and in pairs. But it should be remembered that they are territorial animals, they do not always recognize the neighborhood. Several Crabies can compete for food, power, or a female. In battles, they lose their limbs, growing after shedding.

In captivity, crabs rarely breed. To find out where the male is and where the female is, turn the animal upside down and look at the abdomen. Females have a wide abdomen, in males it is narrow. Males have a bright color, unlike females, and they are larger. Lifespan in captivity 3-4 years.

Species diversity

Freshwater crabs are divided into species, most often they are representatives of the genus Decapod, family Potamonidae, which charges more than 100 species. They are found in temperate and tropical latitudes.

The freshwater crab Potamon Potamonis (Dutch) lives in the Black Sea. It feels great in water with low pH and hardness. Like all amphibious arthropods, it lives partly in water and on land. In aquarium conditions it is recommended to keep it in fresh water.

In the natural environment lives only 2 species of crabs, accustomed in fresh and salt water. These are freshwater Eriohair and Helice. They came to us from the Far Eastern countries, and belong to the Grapsida family. They can move from the sea to the rivers, they can also be kept in home aquaterrariums. They need clean and oxygenated water, in other conditions they die.

In tropical aquariums often contain a crab with a special name - "vampire". His homeland - Malaysia and Thailand. The color of the body is purple-violet, the eyes are red, most likely, got its name because of the appearance. The vampire leads a land life, in the aquarium can live with a group of relatives. Vampire crab eats peat and protein feed.

See what a vampire crab looks like.

In the nurseries of lovers you can often see the small crab of Cesarmid, which hails from tropical rain forests. Dwells in mangroves, where there is an abundance of sandy and silty soil. It feeds on small crustaceans and insects.

Red-crown crab - comes from the Indochina Peninsula. On a 4-centimeter body, bulging eyes are noticeable, the body is red, oval and flattened at the sides. It is recommended to settle in tanks with snags, branches and stones. Do not eat plants, but often digs out of the ground.

Thai microcrab Limnopilos niyanetri - found in freshwater rivers in Thailand. The body size is only 1 centimeter. The shell is light gray, claws brown. Easily adapts to the aquarium.

The New Zealand spider crab Amarinus lacustris - with a brown or dark green body color 2 cm long. Loves aquaterreriums with abundant vegetation, many prongs, branches and labyrinth tunnels. Leads nocturnal, itself peaceful and slow.

How to keep home crabs

The content of armor-clad is acceptable in an aquarium with a volume of 50 liters and a height of 10-15 cm. Tropical crabs living in fresh water are accustomed to constant movement. It is desirable that the tank was a lot of inputs and outputs. For example, the "vampire" likes when there is sphagnum moss at the bottom of the house for convenience. Many crustaceans need clean water, free from heavy metals, ammonia and nitrates. There must be a slow flow in the tank. Water parameters for the nursery: the temperature is 24-26 degrees in water and 25-28 on land, the acidity of water is 7.0-7.5 pH, hardness - 10-20о on average.

For each type of crab you should select individual decorations and the type of ground coating. Some arthropods prefer sand, others - silty bottom. Tropical representatives like a vampire and a reddish mantle can live in a thin layer of sand. Stones and snags, stile-leaved plants must be present, as the crabs are used to taking food from them.

See how the crab aquarium Geosesarma sp. Vampire and Red Devil.

Compatibility with fish is possible, but you need to experiment. More suitable active species of fish, for example, cichlids and tetras. And it is unlikely to get along with the bottom fish.


Crabs are not accustomed to take food from the ground, it is better to spread it on another surface of the aquarium. Eating food looks funny: with both claws, the crab puts food into the mouth. The diet is varied, both vegetable and live feeding, seafood.

You can feed vegetables (except potatoes). Eat fruit, chicken fillet, mussels, shrimp, squid. They like greens: lettuce leaves, dandelion leaves, nettles, pretreated with boiling water. It is advisable to add calcium-enriched feed for normal shell growth. Having accumulated enough nutrients in it, the freshwater crab sheds and discards the old shell.

Aquarium Breeding

Favorable content in clean water and enriched with nutrients feeding does not guarantee the appearance of offspring. This is due to the fact that crabs - territorial animals, are prone to conflict. Even the owner can pinch the finger.

In the natural environment, arthropods breed for three summer months, when the weather becomes warm and comfortable. Breeding females simultaneously monitor the older brood, bearing new spawn. Fry in the first months of life often molt. Breed in the prepared shelters. Due to their nature, they are very sensitive and aggressive during this period.

Crabs in the aquarium

Crabs in the aquarium are interesting and funny inhabitants. They stand out for their bright color and extraordinary temper.

Content of crabs in the aquarium

For the normal life of crabs in an aquarium, they need to create conditions similar to natural ones:

  1. Vessel. Crab life conditions are aquaterrarium. A sufficient amount of water must be supplemented with stone islands and vegetation. Such pets spend a lot of time on the beach or partially dive into the pond.
  2. Water. Crabs feel great in cool and clear water, there should be a filter in the tank. Water temperature is suitable for them within 22-25 degrees, pH is more than 7, hardness is not less than 10.
  3. Compatibility. Ideally, the crabs with fish do not contain, they lodge them in a separate aquarium with salted water and sandy soil. Some species of crabs can be kept with aquarium fish, but carefully.

How to feed a crab in an aquarium? Their favorite delicacy is a live bloodworm, periodically you need to feed crabs with daphnia. They will not refuse from vegetable food - a piece of banana, apple, carrot. Crabs are omnivores.

Types of domestic crabs in the aquarium

The most popular aquarium crabs are:

  1. Rainbow crab. It has a tricolor color - blue back, bright orange legs and a white abdomen;
  2. King crab. It has a light beige body, decorated with a scattering of dark spots. There is another one of his name - leopard;
  3. Red mangrove crab. Differs in small dimensions. The back is painted in blue and red, claws - in lemon or orange;
  4. Freshwater crab. It has a soft color - blue-gray back, pincers - from terracotta to dark brown.

Proper conditions of detention will provide well-being for the crab. Such funny pets will be a real decoration of the aquarium.

Briefly about the content of invertebrates and other animals in the aquarium

Although in nature invertebrates, amphibians, reptiles live in the same environment with fish, however, it is better to keep them separate or together in an aquarium, but very carefully. In recent years, the number of invertebrates, which are kept in the same aquarium with fish, has grown many times. But at the same time their number is only a tiny part of what it is in nature, and in the future there will be even more available types of invertebrates.


Some species of crabs can be kept in an aquarium with fish, but most still require special conditions. Crabs in a regular aquarium pose many problems. Most live in salted water, they are also unsurpassed experts on the shoots from the aquarium, they are destroyers - they damage the plants and seriously dig up the soil. Ideally, crabs are kept in a separate aquarium, with salted water, sandy ground and plenty of shelter. Avoid keeping with the crabs slow fish, fish living at the bottom, which they will tweak.

Since the crabs are omnivores, in the aquarium they will eat everything they can get to. If they are contained in soft water, then crabs should be fed with a special high calcium diet, which crabs use to create shell. Since crabs are shoots experts, there should be no gaps in the aquarium through which a crab can crawl. In the case when the crab still managed to get out of the aquarium, you need to put a wet sponge next to the aquarium. In order to turn drying, the crab will look for the most humid place, and come across a sponge where it can be caught and returned to the aquarium.

Almost all crabs need access to land. Moreover, some water is needed only periodically and most of the time they spend on land.


There are many freshwater shrimp, but even more of them live in brackish or sea water. Shrimps are very useful in an aquarium, as they eat leftover food and algae, with only a few of them dangerous to the inhabitants. The biggest problem with keeping fish is to pick fish that won't hunt shrimp. But, with the right choice, shrimp are wonderful and very useful inhabitants of the aquarium. For example, Amano's shrimp (Caridina japonica), which perfectly eats filamentous algae and is often found in herbalists.

Or neocardin (cherry as well), a very common and very small shrimp, which can decorate both a huge and very small aquarium.


Very often aquarists try to get rid of snails. Just the problem is that many species of snails multiply very quickly, overflowing the aquarium and spoiling its appearance. There are many ways to get rid of snails, for example, to get predatory snails helen. Of course, this method is the most convenient, along with such methods as keeping fish eating snails or setting traps. Note, however, that a limited number of snails in an aquarium is not only not harmful, but useful, since the snails clean the aquarium by eating the remnants of food and other garbage.

The larger the snail, the easier it is to control the amount in the aquarium and the slower it multiplies. Of the large species, the most popular is ampularia (Ampullaria sp.), Which can grow up to 10 cm. For its maintenance, no special conditions are needed, but it cannot be planted together with large, predatory species. They can eat it or tear off her mustache. When keeping such large snails, it is important to monitor their number and clean the dead promptly. Dead snail decomposes quickly, while spoiling the water.



The content of crayfish in an aquarium creates many problems (and here we talked about the most popular crayfish in the aquarium). They will hunt any fish that dare to swim close. And believe me, with their external sluggishness, they can be very fast! Often, inexperienced aquarists plant crayfish in a common aquarium and then wonder where the fish go ... In addition, they actively dig up the aquarium to suit their design needs and at the same time cut the plants. Suffer from their attacks and even fellow shrimp.

The best thing is to keep the crayfish in a separate aquarium, because they can really be very beautiful. But also dangerous for other residents. If you want to have cancer, then the Mexican orange dwarf cancer will be the most accommodating and beautiful.


Small spur frogs are quite popular and are often sold on the market and in pet stores. Spurs are one of the few amphibians that only have enough water, without surfaces on which it can be climbed. These frogs can live in an aquarium with fish, they are not capricious, they eat all kinds of live food, and their skin releases natural antibiotics into the water, which help to heal diseases in fish. Of the drawbacks, we note that the spur-like swims do not really disassemble the road, and tender plants will have difficulty, like to dig the ground and can eat small fish.

All other species of frogs require a special vivarium to keep, with areas where frogs can get out of the water and strict control of the humidity of the air. Like crabs, most frogs can go for a walk out of your tank, and you need to close it tightly.


The dandelion is the most common commercially available. This is a small reptile that grows no more than 15-25 cm, but it is completely unsuitable for keeping with aquarium fish. It is predatory, eats all the fish, besides, it destroys everything in the aquarium, and produces a large amount of dirt. And yes, this cute animal can bite more painfully than a dog.

Little red-eared turtles


When we buy a new animal in the aquarium, we expect that we will be prompted to make the right decision and be dissuaded from the wrong one. But most often this does not happen. And invertebrates and amphibians enter the aquarium, which are not needed there and even dangerous.

Remember: do not buy species unfamiliar to you, if you do not know what you need for their content, and how to keep them right! This will save your pets from death, and you from unnecessary expenses and stress.

Aquarium crabs

Aquarium crabs often become inhabitants of domestic ponds. Most crabs inhabit the oceans and seas, but some can live in fresh water, rivers. Therefore, such freshwater species sometimes get to a new place of residence - a home aquarium.

Types of aquarium crabs

Dutch crab

Some freshwater crabs only live in freshwater. These include representatives of the squad Decapoda. The unit belongs to the family Potamonidae, which includes in its ranks about two hundred species. Among them are also tropical. But in the rivers, lakes and in the waters of the Black Sea lives another freshwater representative - Potamon Potamonis or the Dutch crab.

In these reservoirs, the aquarium crab also feels excellent due to the fact that the life-giving moisture is slightly alkaline and hard. At the bottom of the reservoir there are also calcareous sediments. You can meet this type of aquarium crab both in the pond and on the shore. It is worth noting that quite rarely aquarium crabs feel great in seawater and freshwater. Let these types of aquarium crabs still occur, but this is more of an exception than a rule.


In total, there are two types of aquarium crab in nature that can live normally in sea water and in fresh rivers. We are talking about freshwater crabs such as Eriohair and Helice. These representatives of the water world came to us from the Far East, they belong to the family of sea crabs - Grapsidae. Often in nature, they move from the salty sea depths to rivers that flow into the sea.

These animals are also found in domestic waters. The conditions of keeping aquarium crabs of these species are important. Only in pure and oxygen-rich water can these types of aquarium crabs be contained. Otherwise, in worse conditions, they may die.

Keeping and feeding aquarium crabs

Pure and oxygen-enriched water will be the key to success for crabs. It is desirable that in the pond there were plants that emit a lot of oxygen. This may be Elodieus or fern-ceratopteris, vallesneria or riccia, hygrophil. The maintenance of aquarium crabs also implies the installation of grottoes or large stones in a reservoir. It is on such stones that a crab will crawl out of the water, basking on stones and ledges for a long time.

Feeding crabs is an important task for the owner of the aquarium. So, in the menu of the inhabitants of the reservoir should include pipemaker, bloodworms, snails, pieces of fish and meat. We should not forget that in nature, the diet of these animals is very diverse. They do not refuse plant foods - algae. In order to get a piece of seaweed, a crab tears it off with a claw stone.

Breeding crabs

If you keep aquarium crabs clean and well fed, they feel pretty good at home. The reproduction of crabs in natural conditions occurs during all summer months when comfortable and warm weather is established. Crabs caviar breed, and in the summer months you can find females with caviar and young individuals. At the same time, the young at the dawn of life will often fade, which with time will occur less and less.

Reproduction of crabs, as well as molting, will require shelter. During this period, they become vulnerable. Adult crabs will each occupy their own territory, aggressively protecting it from the encroachments of its neighbors. Individuals often fight among themselves, especially during molting. If you treat a crab without proper respect, it can tweak its owner’s finger quite perceptibly. Adults are best kept alone, without putting them in the same aquarium.

Aquarium Rainbow Crab

Радужный краб (лат. Cardisoma armatum) - земноводное ракообразное, обитающее во многих аквариумах и домашних акватеррариумах. Другие название краба: краб индиго, трехцветный краб, наземный краб, краб-патриот. Пожалуй, его размеры крупнее, а окрас тела ярче по сравнению с сородичами, поэтому он очень полюбился поклонникам подводных питомцев. Что касается ухода за ним, то животное обладает привередливым и капризным нравом. It lives on the Pacific coast.

Amphibious species that lives in minks dug in the sand. During the breeding season it moves to the ocean waters. The rest of his life he spends at his mink, studying the coastal territory. There is also looking for food, sometimes it comes into the forest, returning back. Otherwise, the competitor crabs will occupy his house with subsequent fights.

According to the morphological characteristics of the tricolor crab, they belong to the order Decapoda (decapod crustaceans), the suborder Brachyra, the subfamily Grapsoides, the family Geracinidae, the genus Cardisoma.


The rainbow crab has a large size of the body, which is characterized by a bright, contrasting color. In nature, it grows up to 10 cm, in captivity less. Lives about 8-10 years with optimal conditions of maintenance and care.

Rainbow crabs are characterized by rivalry with representatives of their own species - during the meal, they either take away or cover their neighbor's food, showing him their claws. Sometimes one claw is bigger than the other. Claws are designed to protect and confirm their value. That limb, which is smaller, helps to get food. Several crabs can be settled in a 10-liter aquarium, if it has room for landfall.

The rainbow crab is an animal for which sexual dimorphism is inherent. Males have a narrow and triangular abdomen, pressed close to the body, abdomen of females wider, also triangular in shape. Females are often larger than males. Mineral-rich water contributes to the adaptation of pets to the new habitat.

See how a couple of rainbow crabs eat.

Crab conditions and nature

In captivity, rainbow crabs molt in fresh water, sometimes they come to sit on a raft or stone, using it as land. Rather, it is a congenital habit, rather than a sign of his poor state of health.

Indigo crab content is possible in an aquaterrarium with a coastal zone of at least 1/3 of the total tank size. The water is not necessarily deep, it can cover 10-15 cm. It is recommended to mark the coastline with a large tuff or Kenyan stone. Then a little soil will be able to pass through the cracks, forming an interesting descent into the water. The soil should not be too small, 3-5 mm one grain. In this case, it will be easier to siphon.

They lead a digging-digging lifestyle, often digging a decent pit with mounds in the sand. To avoid this, a clay tube with a diameter greater than the size of its body is placed at an angle of 45 ° on the coastal part. The tube should not stagnate water, through it will pass through the draft.

The process of digging up sand looks extremely funny: the crab presses a portion of the soil to itself, goes to the water and throws it there. And then follows the next batch. Often the picture is repeated - this is a necessary occupation for crustaceans, the desire for which is given by nature.

You can add salt to the aquarium water to the degree of 6-10 ppm per 1 liter. For the soil suitable coral chips or purified sand. The rainbow crab periodically fades. When the chitinous cover increases, they change the old shell to a new one. The new molt of the crab is able to influence the temperature range of water, the diet, feed and lighting. Shedding crab in the water. After molting do not disturb the animals, update the water to fresh in a few days.

Look at the flock of rainbow crabs.

Under favorable conditions of existence, the rainbow crab is quickly restored after molting, not having formations in the form of holes on its shell. Calcium deficiency, reduced water mineralization leads to a decrease in the quality of the coating.

Aquaterrarium advised to plant trees, crabs love to eat greens. So that they do not eat all the plants, you should give the animals food, rich in fiber and vitamins: pears, apples, oranges, bananas, Brussels sprouts, boiled carrots, pumpkin, green peas. The nettle scalded with boiling water, lettuce leaves, dandelions and spinach are also useful for them. Do not disdain carrion. Sometimes they do not refuse feed for fish, meat and shellfish. Food must be laid out on the same surface on land. Some aquarists have learned to tame domestic crabs, they themselves asked for hands, joyfully meeting a person.

The following varieties of seedlings are suitable as vegetation: Javanese moss, hornpole, elodea, Indian water fern, bladderwort, duckweed, water hyacinth, nayas. Floating plants will survive, but bottom plants will be eaten.

Recommended water temperature: 24-26 degrees in water and 25-28 degrees on land. The acidity of water is 7.0-7.5 pH, water hardness - 15-20o. Crab fry are prone to frequent molting. Adults change their shell 1-2 times a year. Install a filter and aerator in the aquarium, low-power fluorescent lamps. For each crab should allocate 0.3 square meters. m bottom area. Guppies, swordtails, danios, mollies, barbs and shrimps can be lodged in the water to them. It is proved that their crustaceans will not eat. Oddly enough, crabs can attack large fish.

In captivity, tricolor crabs breed with difficulty, because they need sea salted water, where they develop in the plankton larval stage. Rarely crabs reproduced offspring in aquariums.

Creating an amazing aquarium with mangrove crabs

Many prefer the unusual inhabitants of aquariums. One of these exotic pets can be a red mangrove crab, which is excellent live in artificial reservoirs. In nature, a large population is observed in southeast Asia. The crab got its name because of the habitat - mangroves. Sometimes it can be found on the beaches, where he is selected in search of food.

Considering this crab it can be attributed to both land and aquatic species. If the red mangrove crab has climbed into the wet thickets, it may well do without water for a long time. At that moment, when the crab is on land, it tries not to leave the reservoir for long distances, so that at the moment of danger it can quickly hide in the water.

Crab description

Mangrove crab is small in size, its calf diameter rarely exceeds 5 centimeters. Color may vary by habitat, conditions and genetic predisposition. Most often the back is painted in bluish-red color. The legs are red in color with a deep purple tint. Pincers are mostly reddish, but there are individuals whose “fingers” are bright yellow, greenish or orange.

Distinguish the female and the male is not particularly difficult. Take a good look at the abdomen. Males have a pressed abdomen to the back, the distance from the abdomen to the back of the female is much larger and has a wider base. However, you should not be introduced to the pets, not having for this experience, since with a small size they are able to greatly hurt the hand with claws. The life expectancy of a crab is four years.


In the wild, red mangrove crab prefers to stay away from other members of the family. This happens because of the sole control of the territory in which he produces food. In this regard, the crabs are terrible owners. Therefore, if you decide to buy one pet, then you can be calm, he alone will definitely not be bored. In the event that you decide to acquire a pair of different-sex crabs, then be ready for fights. To reduce conflict situations is possible only by increasing the quadrature of the aquarium. Each individual should have at least 30 square centimeters.

For the content and arrangement of aquaterrarium it is worth considering the peculiarities of the crab. Most pets like to spend time above the water, sitting on a warm stone. But only he feels the danger, immediately disappears into the water column or escapes to some refuge. In the event that a red mangrove crab decides that another mangrove rival crab lives next to it, then skirmishes between them cannot be avoided. Each of them will become cocky and will not miss the opportunity to hurt the other. Even if at the beginning of their acquaintance does not cause any concerns, this is a direct sign that both are waiting for the right moment to attack. In a more vulnerable position is the one who will quickly molt. During this period, the individual may suffer greatly, and in some cases may be completely eaten. This characteristic does not depend on the sex of the red crab and the conditions of detention.

Requirements for aquaterrarium:

  • Additional heating;
  • Careful filtering;
  • Enhanced aeration;
  • The presence of the top cover, glass or mesh;
  • The water level is not more than 14-16 cm;
  • Humidity above 80 percent;
  • Non-sharp ground;
  • The presence of a large number of plants and greens;
  • The presence of surface islets.

It happens that the cunning crab still manages to escape from the aquarium and crawl away from view. Experiencing strongly about this is not worth it. To find the fugitive, just put a damp towel on the floor and put a bowl of water. Be sure to find your pet soon there.

As feed can be used:

  • Food of plant origin (mainly);
  • Snails;
  • Small insects;
  • Bloodworm;
  • Worms;
  • Fruits, greens and vegetables.

It is recommended to fold cooked food on an island. This method is consistent with the way the crab is fed in its natural environment and allows the water to remain clean longer.


In the wild, the female red crab can harbor 3.5 thousand eggs. However, in artificial reproduction does not occur. In order for the eggs to hatch, it is necessary to go through a planktonic stage, which is possible only in salt water. It takes about a couple of months to form small crabs. Only after this, the crab leaves the reservoir and go to live in mangroves or fresh water. In artificial conditions to create a unique microclimate is not possible.

Aquarium crabs

Aquarium crabs are becoming increasingly popular with aquarium lovers. They attract with their entertaining behavior and bright colors.

How to keep aquarium crabs?

The conditions of keeping aquarium crabs depend on the type of crabs. In most cases, you will need to choose an aquarium. There are also land crabs, so they need more land than water, in which case you need an aquaterrarium. An important feature of crabs is water - although most of them are freshwater, there are some types of crabs for which you need to add some salt water.

Feeding crabs

Let's look at what to feed the crabs. In the diet, crabs are unpretentious and omnivorous. In their diet may be present as pieces of fruit and vegetables, and seafood. They are happy to use a variety of insects and sinking fish food.

Breeding crabs

When crabs are over 8 years old, they can breed. The male mates with the female, and she lays her eggs. Then from the eggs the larvae appear, which become crabs. Unfortunately, breeding of aquarium crabs in aquarium conditions is rare.

What types of crabs can I buy?

Let's name the main types of aquarium crabs:

  1. Gecarcinidae - mangrove crab, it is called rainbow, red and blue, red and blue and royal. It is distributed on the coast of Southeast Asia and tropical Africa.
  2. Ocipodidae - attracting crab or ghost crab, distributed along the tropical coast.
  3. Sesarmidae - sisarmids, these are small crabs living in mango thickets and estuaries, some species live in the tropics. This is one of the best-selling species.
  4. Grapsidae - marble crab, a popular representative of the Black Sea.
  5. Potamonidae - freshwater crab is found in the Caucasus, the Crimea and in the mountain rivers of the Balkans. Dozens of subspecies of Potamonidae are found throughout the world.

Aquarium Crab Care

There are some features in the care of aquarium crab:

  • good water filtration;
  • sand washing;
  • water temperature;
  • organizing opportunities for some species to be on land;
  • salinity of water.

The correct approach to caring for an aquarium crab will bring health, long life to the pet, and joy to the host.

How to contain crabs