Hermit Crab Without a Shell

Joseph Poupin, Institut de Recherche de l'Ecole Naval

Hermit crabs, like this one collected in Moorea, usually protect their soft, vulnerable abdomens from predators by reusing empty snail shells.  They are picky home owners and they will trade shells with other crabs to get a better fit or a less damaged shell. This specimen shows the crab without its customary borrowed shelter. Learn more in our Scientists Catalog Life on the Island of Moorea section.