Flame Tip Hermit Crab
The Flame Tip Hermit Crab is one of the most popular hermit crabs for the home marine aquarium. It gets its name from its distinct coloration. Calcinus minutus is named for its white legs with bright orange tips. Like other members of the genus Calcinus, the Flame Tip Hermit Crab also has long eyestalks.
Flame Tip Hermit Crab is very small but boasts an enlarged left claw. If attacked by a predator or threatened, the Flame Tip Hermit Crab backs into its shell and uses the large left claw to block and defend the entrance to its shell. The Flame Tip Hermit Crab is found in the inter-tidal areas from Hawaii through the Central Pacific to the Eastern Pacific.
Since they scavenge for detritus and consume nuisance algae, including red slime algae (cyanobacteria), the Flame Tip Hermit Crab is a highly desired addition to the home reef aquarium. If there are insufficient algae in the aquarium, their diet should be supplemented with dried seaweed. Like other invertebrates, care needs to be taken with the use of medications. Additionally, strict water parameters must be maintained. Be sure to accommodate their growth by supplying empty shells of various size and shape.