Marine Biology

Facts about Spider Crabs



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There are 700 marine species of crab and the Spider Crab is one of them. Some species of this crab have long legs and that is how they got their name because their legs are similar to spiders. They have thick and rounded bodies and they eat the dead flesh of starfish and mollusks. They are native to the Atlantic and Pacific regions. The Spider Crab is a dimorphic creature.

The Japanese Spider Crab is the largest of all Spider Crabs. They have a very long lifespan and they can live to be 100 years old. The Europen Spider Crab likes to live in soft seabeds and they are found partially buried. Some species of the Spider Crab are found in rocky seabeds.

Almost all species of Spider Crabs are frightful in appearance. Many Spider Crabs are very slow moving creatures and they do not harm humans. They are known to live as deep as 800 meters in the seabed. During the spring season is when they lay their eggs.

The Japanese Spider Crabs are very useful because they are used for research and they are also eaten. There is a decrease in the population of the Japanese species and many efforts are being taken to protect them now. These crabs have hook-like hairs on their shells. They are not aggressive creatures. Many species are found along the East Coast. They like to bury themselves completely in the sand to remain hidden.

The males have claws that are much larger than the females. They is how you can tell the difference between them. They are often seen in July when the temperature of the sea is warm. The males often carry the female on their back by using their hind claws. They also feed on mussels and they are able to open them with their claws. The Spider Crabs have skinny legs.

These crabs are not be confused with the Crab Spider. The Crab Spider is similar to the Spider Crab except that it lives on land and these crabs live in the sea. The Spider Crab has spines and bristles on their exoskeleton. This also protects them from predators. The Japanese Spider Crab has a leg span of  four meters. Many species of these crabs are edible. Sometimes you can see them being washed upon the shore. They are really interesting and fun to observe. They also like to hide among seaweed and corals.

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