Q:

Can hermit crabs live out of their shells?

A:

Quick Answer

Hermit crabs have soft, vulnerable abdomens and need to wear shells to protect themselves. A hermit crab without a shell eventually falls victim to predators or even other hermit crabs.

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Full Answer

Hermit crabs grow throughout their lives and wear many different shells at different life stages. Pet hermit crabs should have a variety of shell choices available since they are picky about finding a shell that fits well. Hermit crabs that cannot find a replacement shell readily may try to hide behind a piece of coconut fiber or other debris. Pet crabs prefer shells with round openings and smooth internal surfaces.

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