Anemone Crabs

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Neopetrolisthes maculata - (H. Milne Edwards, 1837)
Anemone Crabs

These crabs are commensals that live on large anem­ones, particularly clownfish-host anemones. Scott W. Michael

[edit] Overview

Anemone Crabs differ from “standard” crabs in having only three pairs of thoracic walking legs. The last (fourth) pair is reduced and folded up over the back of the thorax. Their claws are large, flattened, and roughly elliptical. A pair of large appendages is located on the front underside of the thorax and remains out of sight until the animal feeds. Looking like large, frilled baskets, these mouthparts are like nets waved through the water to catch particulates, such as zooplankton.

Family: Porcellanidae

Other common name(s):

  • Porcelain Crabs
  • Spotted Porcelain Crabs

Native range:

Maximum length: 5 cm (2 in)

Minimum aquarium size: 38 L (10 gal)

Lighting: Immaterial.

Water: Marine 24 °C (297 K, 75 °F) - 28 °C (301 K, 82 °F)

[edit] Feeding

Feed on larger particulate foods suspended in the water column. Some also scavenge aquarium foods. Most starve to death due to a lack of sufficient planktonic foods.

[edit] Aquarium Compatibility

Good aquarium animals. Clownfishes may drive these crabs off their anemone, resulting in the crab’s death.

Reference: A PocketExpert Guide to Marine Invertebrates
Image credit: SWM
Text credit: RLS
Facts about Anemone CrabsRDF feed
Common name Anemone Crabs  +, Porcelain Crabs  +, and Spotted Porcelain Crabs  +
Family Porcellanidae  +
Genus Neopetrolisthes  +
Image credit SWM  +
Lighting Immaterial.  +
Maximum length 2 in  +
Minimum aquarium size 10 gal  +
Native range Indo-Pacific  +, and Caribbean  +
Reference A PocketExpert Guide to Marine Invertebrates  +
Specific name maculata  +
Text credit RLS  +
Water max temp 301 K (28 °C, 82 °F)  +
Water min temp 297 K (24 °C, 75 °F)  +
Water type Marine  +