12 Popular Types Of Pet Crabs (with Pictures)

Types Of Pet Crabs

Last Updated on December 27, 2023 by Fumipets

12 Popular Types Of Pet Crabs (with Pictures)


When we think of pets, furry and feathery companions typically come to mind. However, the world of pet ownership extends into the fascinating realm of crustaceans, with pet crabs offering a unique and captivating experience.

These intriguing creatures, with their distinct behaviors and varied habitats, present a world of discovery for enthusiasts and casual pet owners alike. Ranging from the vibrant land hermit crabs, often seen in colorful shells, to the aquatic marvels like fiddler crabs, each species offers a glimpse into diverse ecosystems.

Understanding the different types of pet crabs is crucial for providing the right care and environment for these captivating creatures. From their dietary needs to habitat requirements, each crab species has its own set of needs that must be met to thrive in a home setting. In this introduction to pet crabs, we’ll explore the various species that you can welcome into your home, each offering a unique window into the natural world.

Types Of Pet Crabs

Including pet crabs in your aquarium setting may be a fun alternative to just adding additional fish, whether you are an experienced aquarium keeper or are just getting started. Crabs kept as pets come in a broad range of hues and dimensions. As they climb, forage, and burrow, they may be quite fun to watch.

You might be worried that keeping pet crabs would be too difficult, but don’t be! Numerous varieties of pet crabs are no more difficult to care for than any other kind of aquarium inhabitants. Are you prepared to think about getting a pet crab? Here are 12 common varieties of pet crabs for your consideration.


The 12 Popular Types Of Pet Crabs


1. Rainbow Land Crab

Rainbow Land Crabs are a vibrant addition to your family of pets because of their vast range of colors! These crabs require both land and water regions in their aquarium to thrive, as suggested by their name. Additionally, they like being maintained in pairs. Rainbow Land Crabs are available in purple, orange, blue, or cream hues.

2. Vampire Crab

Freshwater crabs called “Vampire Crabs” have luminous, yellow eyes. They are particularly well-liked as pets because of their distinctive look. These crabs also appear in vivid hues, typically purple, orange, or red. Because they are a relatively recent crab species discovery, vampire crabs might be difficult to locate as pets.

3. Halloween Moon Crab

halloween moon crab-pixnio2

These crabs are dressed in all the Halloween-themed hues! The Halloween Moon Crab, also known as the Halloween Hermit Crab, features black shell, orange legs, and claws with purple patterns. These crabs may have Halloween-themed hues, but despite their genuine fear of one another, they are anything but. Despite the fact that they are gregarious creatures, Halloween Moon Crabs should only be permitted short play dates since any longer can lead to an unplayful brawl that frequently has catastrophic repercussions.

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4. Fiddler Crabs

Fiddler Crabs

Regular beachgoers are accustomed to seeing male fiddler crabs, which may be identified by their very enormous claw. Fiddler crabs come in around 100 distinct species, all of which have a similar look. One male should be kept per tank because males are quite territorial, although multiple female companions are acceptable. You should make plans to retain at least two fiddlers since they dislike being left alone. Because fiddler crabs prefer saltwater to freshwater, you must salt the water in their habitat.

5. Land Hermit Crabs

Hermit crabs

Another more popular variety of pet crabs are hermit crabs. These crabs have a lot of unique habitat needs that might be challenging to provide in a tank environment, making them a little challenging to keep as pets. Hermit Crabs, despite their name, really love to live in groups, so if you decide to adopt a Land Hermit Crab as a pet, you’ll need to prepare for maintaining more than one.

6. Red Claw Crabs

Red Claw Crabs

A common and accessible kind of pet crab is the red claw crab, so named because of its vivid red claws. In terms of crabs, they are very easy to care for, which increases their popularity. When thinking about keeping red claw crabs, one thing to bear in mind is that due to their aptitude for climbing, they are renowned for being skilled escape artists. To keep their tank safe, you will need to exercise additional caution.

7. Panther Crabs

Because of its eye-catching appearance—a yellow or orange body covered in black spots—panther crabs are common pet crabs. These crabs may grow up to 3 inches long, making them bigger than some other varieties of pet crabs.  Panther Crabs frequently act aggressively toward other tank dwellers, maybe taking their jungle cat namesakes a little too seriously. Panther crabs have been known to eat other crabs or fish kept with them if they are not fed on time. Male Panther Crabs will also fight among themselves, so make sure your male Panther Crab has a female companion.

8. Thai Micro Crab

Thai Micro Crabs are, as their name implies, very tiny, timid crabs. They often barely reach a length of half an inch! Be very cautious when selecting tank mates for these crabs since they are so small and delicate. They should only coexist with other peaceful creatures that won’t opt to eat these little crabs as a snack.

9. Pom Pom Crab

Pom Pom Crabs got their name because they resemble pom-poms as they swim about carrying anemones in their claws in the wild. Pom Pom Crabs employ the anemones for self-defense, boxing the stinging organisms in the direction of adversaries, as opposed to supporting the neighborhood sports team. These little crabs are simple to maintain in captivity, however they could be more difficult to locate now that they are being offered as pets.

10. Thai Devil Crab

Thai Devil Crabs, despite their name, are among the more tranquil pet crab species and get along well with a range of peaceful tank mates. Although their typical lifespan in captivity is five years, these crabs can reach lengths of up to four inches and can survive for up to fifteen years. Thai Devil Crabs come in a variety of hues, including red and purple.

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11. Matano Crab

The purple and white at their leg joints give Matano Crabs a distinctive look. You don’t need to supply these crabs with a land area in your tank because they are content to spend their entire time underwater. However, while determining whether to keep one as a pet, keep in mind that the Matano crab has extremely precise water temperature and pH needs.

12. Gold Claw Crab

These crabs are so named because of their enormous, golden claws. Gold Claw Crabs are content to forage along an aquarium’s bottom. You should make sure their tank has a sandy bottom since they also like to dig in the sand. Gold Claw Crabs are very adept at eluding tanks, just like their Red Claw cousins.

Selecting A Pet Crab

How will you ever pick a pet crab when there are so many unique and intriguing varieties available? When choosing the ideal pet crab, there are a few things to keep in mind.

Will Your Crabs Be Joining An Existing Tank Or Living Alone?

Choose a kind of pet crab that will get along with your other aquatic creatures if you want to add it to an already busy tank setting. Ensure that none of the fish or other animals in your aquarium will attempt to consume your new crab. Select a pet crab that accepts tank mates and isn’t possessive.

What size tank do you have? Crabs kept as pets can grow larger than others and require more room, like the Rainbow Land Crab. Others require a greater area to avoid confrontations since they are so possessive.

Since the majority of the crabs on this list are freshwater crabs, having a saltwater tank drastically reduces your options.

How Many Crabs Do You Want?

Many of the pet crabs we talked about do not enjoy living alone. It is imperative that others do since they are so possessive! Others prefer to live in groups rather than couples, such as the land hermit crab. When choosing what kind of pet crab to purchase, take into account carefully how many crabs you can accommodate and are ready to care for.

Can You Provide The Right Habitat?

Different environmental needs apply to different types of pet crabs. While some people are content to live entirely underwater, others require a terrestrial space to occasionally escape their aquatic lifestyle. Some species, such as the vampire crab, like to coexist alongside numerous aquatic plants. No matter which variety you pick, be ready to always keep your tank safe since all crabs will try to escape whenever they get the chance.

What Types Are Available?

Your final decision on a pet crab may be influenced by the varieties that are readily accessible to you. The vampire and pom pom crabs, two of the pet crabs we covered, are more difficult to locate. In contrast, it may be relatively simple to get varieties like the Fiddler and Red Claw Crabs from a number of sites.

Caring For Your Pet Crab

Each variety of pet crab has a unique set of requirements for care, as we’ve already explained. Make sure you have done your homework and chosen the ideal environment and nutrition for your pet crab before you bring it home. Here are a few common recommendations for feeding and caring for pet crabs.


The number and size of crabs you are taking home will determine the size of the tank that is needed. A 5-gallon tank should be used as the bare minimum. Make sure you block off any access points, such as plumbing or the tank’s roof.

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You must provide a place in your tank for your pet crab to exit the water if they require both a water area and a land area. Adding enough sand to one side of your tank to turn it into a beach for your crabs is one technique to do this.

Check your new crab’s needs for temperature, humidity, and water pH. You must learn how to apply the proper quantity of salt if your new crab must live in brackish or saltwater in order to be healthy.

You can maintain the ideal water temperature for your crab with the aid of a tank thermometer. Plants, pebbles, sticks, or other materials that will bring their captive environment as similar to where they would live in the wild as feasible may also be added to your crab’s tank.


As omnivores, crabs require a diet that includes both plant and animal products. It’s a good idea to give your crab a range of various meals to keep it healthy. You should consider giving your pet crab the following foods:

  • Commercial crab food
  • Bloodworms
  • Cooked vegetables
  • Small, brined fish
  • Flies

Regular feeding is important since certain crab species may try to devour their tank mates if they go hungry. You must remove any uneaten food, so you don’t want to overfeed your crabs. Offer them a little at first, and if they still look hungry, give them more.

Keeping Your Pet Crab Healthy


Making sure your crabs are fed the proper meals and are kept in the proper habitat is crucial to maintaining their health. Making ensuring they have tank mates who won’t want to devour them is a crucial additional factor! Asking the breeder or pet store where you purchased your crab to assist you in selecting suitable tank mates for them is a smart approach to ensure this.

Change the water in your crab’s tank frequently to keep it clean. Anytime the water seems or smells bad, it should be changed. For your crab’s tank, be sure to only use filtered water because pollutants like chlorine are harmful to crabs. Additionally, you should replace their sand and make sure the other components of the tank remain clean.

The following are some symptoms to look out for to determine if your crab is healthy or ill:

  • Eating too much or not enough
  • Color fading or color changes
  • Decreased movement or activity level
  • Lack of coordination

If you have any concerns that your crab is not doing well, consult a veterinarian immediately.


As long as you can provide them with proper care, pet crabs may be a fun addition to your aquarium. You are sure to discover the ideal pet crab from the wide variety of options available. Just be careful to keep one step ahead of these cunning climbers and obstruct all of their exits!

FAQs on Types of Pet Crabs


What are some common types of pet crabs?

Popular pet crab species include the Hermit Crab, Fiddler Crab, and Halloween Moon Crab. Each species has unique care requirements and habitats, with Hermit Crabs being a favorite due to their land-dwelling nature and easy care.


What do Hermit Crabs need in their habitat?

Hermit Crabs require a warm and humid environment, typically around 75-85°F with about 70-80% humidity. They need a mix of sand and coconut fiber substrate to burrow, access to both fresh and saltwater, and various-sized shells for when they change their shells.


Can Fiddler Crabs live in a freshwater tank?

No, Fiddler Crabs are brackish water creatures. They need an aquarium that combines both land and water, with the water being slightly saline. It’s important to maintain a proper balance to replicate their natural environment.


Are pet crabs social creatures?

It depends on the species. Hermit Crabs, for instance, are quite social and thrive in groups, whereas other crab species might be more solitary. It’s essential to research the social needs of the specific crab species you’re interested in.


What do Halloween Moon Crabs eat?

Halloween Moon Crabs are omnivores. In captivity, they can be fed a variety of foods, including commercial crab food, fruits, vegetables, and occasional protein sources like cooked meat or fish. They also require access to fresh water.




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