Fun Land Crab Facts For Kids | Kidadl


Fun Land Crab Facts For Kids

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Land crabs (Cardisoma guanhumi) are species of crabs found in the tropical south Atlantic Ocean and south Caribbean seas.

This species of crabs, commonly found in Florida, depends on aquatic and terrestrial animals for food as they eat prawns, shrimps, beetles, and ants. They live in small holes that are known as burrows. These crabs are caught by setting bait in burrows by humans as they are consumed by humans. Not all land crabs can be consumed, as some of these crabs are known to be poisonous. During the breeding season, females lay about a few hundred thousand eggs, and only a portion of them survive and develop fully into zoea (young crabs). Many land crabs differ in size and characteristics, too, as some land crabs are small, whereas the coconut crabs are known to be the biggest crabs. To know more about this animal, including the blue land crab, go through this complete article.

If you liked reading about these facts about land crabs common in Florida, you could also check out facts on the blue crab and the Dungeness crabs.

Fun Land Crab Facts For Kids

What do they prey on?

Beetles and large insects

What do they eat?


Average litter size?

300,000–700,000 eggs

How much do they weigh?

17.6 oz (500 g)

How long are they?

4 in (11 cm)

How tall are they?


What do they look like?

Orange, purple, and brown

Skin Type

Hard crust and slimy skin

What were their main threats?

Humans And Other Aquatic Life

What is their conservation status?

Not Evaluated

Where you'll find them?

Swamps, Mangroves, And Land Near The Ocean, Terrestrial And Tropical Ocean


Africa, America, United States, Florida, Pacific Regions, And West Indies









Land crab Interesting Facts

What type of animal is a land crab?

Crabs like the Cardisoma guanhumi (blue land crabs) are found on land in burrows beside the ocean and sea. They are commonly found in Florida. There are eight types of land crabs.

What class of animal does a land crab belong to?

Crabs like the Cardisoma guanhumi (blue land crabs) belong to the class of Malacostracans and are invertebrates.

How many land crabs are there in the world?

The exact population of land crabs, including the Cardisoma guanhumi (blue land crabs) is not known. In 2006, however, there was an estimate of six million land crabs across the world.

Where does a land crab live?

Crabs like the Cardisoma guanhumi are known to live on the coast of the sea and ocean and are often found in their burrows. They live in the southern parts of America, Africa, Pacific regions, Florida, United States, and West Indies.

What is a land crab's habitat?

The land hermit crab habitat includes both water and land but is mostly seen on land in burrows.

Who do land crabs live with?

The land crab migration can be seen in groups in some species, and some prefer to be solitary. For the most part, they are very social creatures who live in groups or colonies of more than 100.

How long does a land crab live?

Land crabs have an average lifespan of about 13 years.

How do they reproduce?

This species of land crabs are known to lay about 300,000 eggs in upland areas that are residential during their breeding season. Once females lay eggs, the blue land crab spawning takes about 39-41 days, in which the crabs go through several larval stages and finally develop into a zoea. These animals attain sexual maturity when they have a carapace of about 1.7 in (45 mm).

What is their conservation status?

The conservation status of these crabs, like the Bermuda land crab species, is currently Not Evaluated.

Land Crab Fun Facts 

What do land crabs look like?

The land crab anatomy is quite simple: it has four pairs of legs and a pair of claws. They have a carapace that protects the lateral and dorsal surfaces and covers the head and thorax. They are orange, dark brown, and purple in color when they are juveniles and turn to bluish-gray as they become adults. Females are lighter in color. Their claws are not equal-sized, and the legs of the Guanhumi species are hairy.

Just like other crab babies, the baby blue land crabs are known as zoea.

How cute are they?

Crabs like the Cardisoma guanhumi are known to be animals found in the southern Caribbean parts, Florida, and Bermuda, and are known to be living in burrows. These crabs are not cute but rather dangerous and gross in appearance as they have ten legs, out of which two are claws, and they have their carapace, which covers their head and adds to their gross physical appearance. The hermit crab baby can be considered cute sometimes, but the adult crabs living in burrows are not cute.

How do they communicate?

Crabs like the guanhumi are known to communicate with each other with the help of acoustic signals and calls that turn into energies. The calls are generally given to attract the opposite sex, warn about predators, and tell the proximity of predators.

How big is a land crab?

Land crabs range in weight at around 17.6 oz (500 g) and in length at about 4 in (11 cm).

However, this species of crabs do not have any fixed weight range or length range as it differs from crab to crab. Giant land species, the coconut crabs, are the biggest crabs and have a span of about 12 in (30 cm). These crabs can be three to four times the size of prawns.

How fast can a land crab run?

These animals that are found beside the ocean and the sea are some of the fastest invertebrates. The speed of this species of crabs differs from each other but is known to have an estimated speed of 1.8-2 mph (2.8-3 kph). The Guanhumi crabs are dependent on animals from the ocean, sea, as well as land and their speed helps them to prey on their food with ease.

How much does a land crab weigh?

The average weight range of the land crabs is about 17.6 oz (500 g) in the wild. Different species are known to have different weights, and the weight of these crabs depends on a lot of factors like the availability of food around the ocean. Coconut crabs are known to be the giant land crab and weigh as much as 10 lb (4.5 kg).

What are the male and female names of the species?

There are no names in particular for males and females of this species from the Caribbean. These land crabs are referred to as Gecarcinidae when it comes to the scientific naming of these sea animals. Apart from this, there are various names that the land crabs get, based on the place they belong to. Some known land crabs are the land crab (Florida-based) called the Florida blue land crab, the Caribbean land crab, the black land crab, the rainbow land crab, the Halloween land crab, the Cuban land crab, or the Cuba land crab. The Jamaican land crab is found in the southern part of Africa. There also exists the vampire land crab, the Australian land hermit crab, coconut land crab, which is also known as the largest land crab alive, the rainforest land crab, the Bahmanian land crab, and the red land crab.

What would you call a baby land crab?

Baby crabs are called zoea. Once they hatch from the eggs in the water or burrow, they turn into larvae called zoea or young crabs. The baby of blue land crabs is also called zoea. The zoea is formed in the water or burrow after 39-41 days and goes through several larval stages during this phase.

What do they eat?

This species of crabs are known to depend on both aquatic and terrestrial habitats for food as they consume crustaceans, prawns, shrimps, other small crabs, beetles, and ants. Land crabs are also known to eat fruits (moreover, they enjoy eating them). A land crab as a pet can be fed with fruits occasionally. Land crab meat is consumed by humans, as they make it to one of the best seafood plates. All the crabs are not edible as some of the land crabs are poisonous. They have other predators like fish, mammals, and birds that roam around coastal areas searching for food. The land crab nymph is the predator of the Guanhumi larvae and eggs.

Are they aggressive?

Yes, land crabs are a very aggressive breed of crabs. They hunt beetles and large insects by water and tear them apart with their powerful claws. The Guanhumi species is also known to be poisonous and is even capable of attacking humans. Having land crab pets is not easy, as although they might be silent and calm, they are very unpredictable, too, as they can even cause serious damage to humans with their strong claw-like parts that they use to tear their prey apart. Crabs are very strong!

Would they make a good pet?

Not all land crabs can be kept as pets in the home, but certain species of crabs do well in houses, too, apart from the wild. Land crabs (pet) are very interesting pets and teach humans a lot by their actions. Land hermit crab care does not need much attention as these crabs are low maintenance and peaceful animals. Land crabs prefer to stay in burrows, their natural habitat, as they are more comfortable living beside the sea and ocean water. Some land crabs are poisonous too and can seriously damage the human body and are advised to keep children away from these terrestrial animals. Keep these land crabs in an aquarium with a sand base. Their ideal temperature is 70-85 F (21-29 C). You can also keep a wet sponge to ensure the right levels of humidity.

Did you know...

The biggest land crab ever is the coconut crab which is also known to be one of the world's largest land crabs and has a span of about 3 ft (1 m). This species of crab can weigh up to 10 lb (4.5 kg) when they are adults. Males wave their large claws to attract females.

If you're looking to catch land crabs, first look for their holes or burrows where you'll see these crabs popping out and disappearing again. You must then attach bait to a thin wire and lower it in a burrow. You will sense when the crabs cling onto the bait. Slowly pull the wire out and use a scooping net to trap the crabs as they come out.

Wondering how to check for land crab holes? You'll find many holes in a particular area. Try closing a few holes by pushing some sand over; you'll find these crabs popping back out and digging the holes again. This is how you locate their holes.

The cuticle separates from the epidermis in a process called apolysis. A few days after this process, the land crabs molt.

Why is it important to purge land crabs before eating them?

Land crabs must be properly purged before they are consumed. Purging is the process of cleaning out everything that these terrestrial crab species eat. These crabs consume many foods and insects that the human body cannot tolerate and therefore must be removed from the crab before consuming its meat. This species of crabs must be purged for at least a few days before being consumed. This process of cleaning crabs with water also helps in improving the way this crab species taste. Crabs are consumed by humans and are known to be one of the most amazing seafood, but in order to enjoy it the most without harming your body, the crabs must be cleaned properly with water.

What are a land crab's legs used for?

Land crabs are wild animals that are found living near Caribbean water bodies and Florida majorly. Biologically, the adults have ten legs in total, and eight out of them are used for walking on coastal areas, beaches. The other two are referred to as pincers as they can hold things and are also referred to as a pair of claws. This claw pair helps the giant land crab to protect itself from others, and also, at the same time, it helps to tear meat and other food items included in the diet of this organism from the ocean and the sea. So, in total, the land crabs have four pairs of walking legs and a pair of pincers or claws. The claws also help this species to dig burrows for themselves to live.

Here at Kidadl, we have carefully created lots of interesting family-friendly animal facts for everyone to discover! For more relatable content, check out these Mydas fly facts and scorpion-tailed spider facts pages.

You can even occupy yourself at home by coloring in one of our free printable Land crab coloring pages.

Written By
Divya Raghav

Divya Raghav dons many hats, that of a writer, a community manager, and a strategist. She was born and raised in Bangalore. After completing her Bachelor’s in Commerce from Christ University, she is pursuing her MBA at Narsee Monjee Institute of Management Studies, Bangalore. With diverse experience in finance, administration, and operations, Divya is a diligent worker known for her attention to detail. She loves to bake, dance, and write content and is an avid animal lover.

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