Posted by Michaela LeMay | 03.19.2024 | Marine Science, Sea Turtle Camp News

Fast Facts: Crabs

Crabs are a common critter that we catch on our salt marsh excursions. One of the best feelings is teaching someone to hold a crab for the first time safely. Here are some fast facts about crabs!

-There are about 4,500 species of crabs.

-Crabs are decapods, meaning they have four pairs of legs and a pair of claws.

-The Japanese Spider Crab is the largest crab and can grow to be twelve feet across.

-Crabs will shed their outer shell, this process is called molting, as they grow. Once they shed their shell, they will be soft-shelled for a couple of days before their new shell hardens fully!

-Some species of crabs have the ability to regrow their claws during a molt.

-Not all crabs can swim in the water column. Some must crawl wherever they need to go or hitch rides from other organisms.

-A group of crabs is called a cast!

– Crabs are omnivores. They will feed on animals and plants!

In North Carolina, it is common to find blue crabs, spider crabs, hermit crabs, and speckled crabs in the surf zone or the marsh!