Hermit Crab Pet Care - Habitat
Environment - Hermit Crab Habitat
Since a hermit crab’s habitat is the place it will spend most of its life, hermit crabs need a roomy home in which to roam around. Many pet stores sell hermit crab cages strictly for hermit crabs, but there are also cages for other small land pets that will work as well if not better. Aquariums work for hermit crab shelters as well. No matter what you choose, make sure the area of the container is large enough for the number of crabs residing there to be comfortable. Another thing to be sure of is that the crab habitat is big enough to contain food and water dishes, extra shells, and toys. The container should also be deep enough that it can hold enough substrate for the crab to be able to bury itself.
Substrate is the type of material used to line the bottom of the hermit crab habitat. This can be a variety of different types of substances. This is a very important aspect of a hermit crab’s home. Appropriate substrates are sands, fine gravel specifically made for hermit crabs, and coconut fiber. Before adding any substrate to a crab habitat, look closely at it and sift through it. Do not use the substrate if it has a strong odor or musty smell. A musty smell can be a sign of moisture contamination. If using coconut fiber, be mindful of this substrate’s tendency to attract fungus gnats, tiny black bugs.
Temperature and Humidity In The Crab Habitat
Another of the basic necessities in securing a healthy environment for your hermit crab is to make sure that the temperature and humidity levels are correct. An appropriate temperature is no less than 72° F. Constant lower temperatures can keep a crab too cold and can kill the crab. On the other hand, constant hot temperatures can cause irreparable damage and a slow and painful death for the crab. To keep a crab habitat at a warm constant temperature, pet stores sell under tank heaters.
For humidity, an appropriate level is at least 70%. The inside of your hermit crab habitat should have a moist, humid feel to it. This will help to keep the gills of the hermit crab moist. A good way to make sure that the humidity and temperature levels are right and stay constant in your hermit crab cage is to have a humidity and temperature monitor. Keep a spray bottle with fresh water handy and periodically mist your pet crab habitat.