food for crabs


Premium Member
What should I be feeding my crabs, I think they are starving. I have a 90g with 30g sump/fuge, 120ish pounds of live rock. The tank is about 5-6 months old I am guessing now.. only have 1 true perc clown in there, about 70 snails and 50 blue/red hermit crabs. My parameters are good, 0 phosphate, 0 nitrite/trate/ammonia. I do 10 percent water change every 1-2 weeks.

Lately I have noticed some dead crabs and empty shells showing up. The past few days I have been dropping shrimp pellets in there, which they go nuts over... is this an ok food for them to help supplement their diet since I am unsure the rock is supplying enough food for them to survive.


itz frank

Gives Bad Advice.
the unfortunate side to mass buying crabs is that there is no way to actually tell how many crabs the tank can support. So you're going to have some loses to starvation. I think you're best bet is to let the tank situate itself with the food you provide for the fish. Maybe add a little more. Plus, crabs will steal each other's shells. So the deaths could be caused by this aswell and not starvation.


New member
It's always good to have several empty shells in your tank to give the crabs something to "grow into". That will help reduce the competition for larger shells.


New member
Is it possible they are molting? If they are eating the pellets, sounds like good food to me. Check with your lfs, see what they have. See if they will give/sell you some out of their tanks, if they have any in them.



New member
Ask your lfs if you can have the shells from any shipping fatalities. Just rinse 'em out and lay them on the sandbed. My wife calls ours the "used car lot". Some online fish/invert sellers also sell empty shells.


Reef Monkey
Premium Member
My blue-legs molt quite frequently, and it looked to me like they were dying off until I realized what was going on. They'll eat just about anything, so shrimp pellets should be just fine. Once your rock is more mature, they'll probably have plenty to eat. I second adding janitors slowly. I don't have nearly the 2-3 per gallon, or whatever that rule of thumb is, but they do a perfectly good job keeping up with my bioload.

As for shells, I heard a great suggestion from someone. He goes to an arts and crafts store and is able to find shells there for next to nothing. My LFS gave me some extras. Those, along with the half dozen or so snails that got "forcefully evicted" from their homes early on when my hermits didn't have sufficient extra shells has kept everyone quite happy.