More about the shore crab

Common, but well hidden

Shore crabs are quite common and thrive in shallow water, but they are not detected that easily because they often hide in the bottom sediment or amongst the seaweed and rocks. Quite often they have the same colours and patterns as their surroundings so that they blend in well.
    Because shore crabs know their territory well, they can quickly run to one of their hideaways if threatened. When travelling longer distances the shore crab usually runs sideways and when they became tired they point the other side of the body in the direction of travel. In this way they alternate between the muscles that do the hardest work.

Food for fish and birds

In spite of their hard shells and pinching claws, the shore crab needs to hide from predators such as fish (t.ex. eels, gobies and bullheads) or birds (t.ex. gulls, cormorants and wild ducks).

Eats most things

During the summer it is easy to entice the shore crab out of its hideaway with food. The smell of bait, like shellfish or fish cannot be resisted.
   Besides the remains of dead organisms, the shore crab eats most of what it can get hold of. They can for example crush small mussels and other shellfish. With larger shellfish it trys to peel them by breaking off bits of the shell, one bit at a time.
    If a fish or some other moving object comes close to the shore crabs hideaway, it will sometimes catch the object with its claw.

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Food for fish and birds

Eats most things

Active at night

Pick it up in your hand

Even on land

Dug down during the winter

Over the whole world

Males and females

Eggs and young

Shore crab    More info     Photo     Other names
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Bo Johannesson | Martin Larsvik | Lars-Ove Loo | Helena Samuelsson