Fiddler crabs (Uca pugnax) are tiny but one of the most interesting creatures. They are named as fiddler crab as they have enlarged claw found in the male of these species. And when the enlarged claw breaks off, the smaller claw grows larger. In addition, a new small claw grows where the large claw was. They are found in mud, sand or in brackish water. They are also known as calling crab. The group of fiddler crab consists of 94 species, which comes under the genus Uca. They grow up to a size of 2 inches.
Habitat of fiddler crabs
The fiddler crab lives in a moist habitat with many dens where they can hide. They are often seen digging holes in the sand to make homes. They are found in muddy burrows, brackish water and on ocean beaches. They are found along tropical and temperate seacoasts all over the world. The three of the species namely Sand Fiddler Crab, Marsh Fiddler Crab and Red-Jointed Fiddler Crab are found along the East coast of North America.
What do fiddler crabs eat?
The answer to the question "what do fiddler crabs eat?" is that they are scavengers and feed on organic matter that are found on the surface of rocks and mud. Their diet consists of algae, microbes, fungus, or other decaying detritus.
Reproduction and Fiddler Crab Life cycle
Before mating, the male fiddler crab attracts female by waving their oversized claws up in the air and then tapping them down to the ground. The female fiddler crab will remain in her burrow for two weeks during her gestation period. Then she releases her egg, which is in mass on the underside of her body. The fiddler crabs have a life span of around 2 years and sometimes 3years in captivity.
Fiddler Crabs facts
- They are close cousins to the Ghost crab.
- The male of these species wave their enlarged claws high in the air to attract females.
- They have about 94 species found all over the world.
- They have 10 legs.
- Fiddler crabs change color- they are dark during day and pale during night.
Fiddler Crab Aquarium
These fiddler crabs are kept as pet occasionally. The fiddler crabs for sale are found in pet stores. They are sold as freshwater crabs but in real they come from brackish water lagoons. The aquarium of the fiddler crab is needed to be designed especially as they have a characteristic to live both on land and water. So, the solution is to line the aquarium using (3-6) inches of aquarium sand. They hide sometimes in the burrows and so they dig up the sand to make burrows. The aquarium is needed to be filled with new water every week so that evaporated water could be replaced. They eat microscopic critters that show up in the sand. The water temperature should be around (24-29) degree Celsius. They can survive up to 3 years, if they are kept properly in the aquarium with their favorable conditions.