Types Of Crabs – There are about 850 types of crabs that are found throughout tropical and semi-tropical regions. True crabs typically have quite a short projecting “tail” and the reduced abdomen is hidden entirely under the thorax.
Animals like hermit crabs, horseshoe crabs, king crabs and porcelain crabs are not true crabs but they are often referred to as them.
1. Blue Crab
These types of crabs are characterized by their blue highlights and extremely sharp shells. When these crabs are in their soft shell form they are mushy with the gill and stomach area so thin that you can see through to the meat.
When the Blue crab matures, they molt their shells which leaves them vulnerable and edible. They have three pair of legs, walk sideways and are equipped with large and powerful claws that can inflict sever injury if handled incorrectly. They primarily feed on oyster, clams, shrimp, snails, worms and other crabs.
2. Dungeness Crab
These types of crabs inhabit water bottoms and grass beds in many oceans. They can be as large as 10 inches across and are very meaty. Dungeness crabs have five pair of legs with the foremost pair ending in claws. They feed on small fish, crustaceans and clams and they have the ability to bury themselves in sand for protection against predators.
3. Red Rock Crab
Red Rocks are the types of crabs that change their color depending on where they are caught from light red to dark red. They are a smaller species with males growing up to seven inches and the females growing up to five inches in diameter. These crabs prefer habitats like pilings, rocks and other structures.
4. Alaskan Snow Crab
Snow crab like most other crabs, molt their shells in order to grow. These types of crabs are found in very icy waters and are much longer lived than warm-water crabs. They can live up to 10 years and often do not reach adulthood until they are 6 or 7 years old. As they age, they often develop black markings on their shells and are considered less appealing for eating purposes. Females often produce several hundred thousand eggs per year.
5. Red Frog Crab
Unlike other crabs that move sideways, these types of crabs move forward and backward. They prefer sandy areas and generally stay burrowed in the sand until food appears. Red Frog crabs are opportunistic eaters and will feed on anything but prefer molluscs, worms, fish and crustaceans.
6. Ghost Crab
Technically going by the name of Ocypode Quadrata, they are the color of straw and were once thought of as an occult or aliens from the depths of the sea. These crabs need to periodically travel to the water to moisten their gills. They have stalked compound eyes that swivel and allow them to have 360 degree vision.
7. Helmet Crab
These are a burrowing species of crabs that are referred to as the “masked crab” due to the way the patterns resemble a human face on the carapace.
They live in sandy substrates and feed on infaunal invertebrates like molluscs and worms. Helmet crabs have two antennae that form a type of breathing tube, allowing oxygenated water to flow to the subtrate.
8. Coconut Crab
These are the biggest land-living arthropods. They inhabit Coastal regions however local extinction is occurring in areas that crabs are forced to live in symmetry with man.
Coconut crabs are nocturnal and stay hidden during the day. They are named for their ability to easily crack coconuts by using their strong pincers so that they can eat the delicious contents inside.