10 Fruits That Hermit Crabs Love To Eat


Fruits That Hermit Crabs Love To Eat

Like humans, Hermit Crabs do need vitamins and minerals (organic and natural) from different fruits to fulfill their nutritional needs. There are a lot of Hermit Crab lovers out there who really love to give their crabs fruits. But one problem that they encounter is not knowing which fruits are safe to give to these creatures. This article would like to share with you the list of Fruits that Hermit Crabs love to eat.

If you own Hermit Crabs as pets, you must have figured out by now that they have a sweet tooth. While these crawling creatures are not fussy about their food, they do have a soft spot for sweet treats.

Are you wondering if there’s a way to feed them sweet treats without harming their health? Yes, you can, by adding fruits to their diet. If you feed them fruits as treats, not only would they love it, but they will grow healthier by eating them.

In this article, we will list 10 fruits that Hermit Crabs are crazy about.

 

The natural diet of Hermit Crabs

For those of you who don’t know it, Hermit Crabs are quite the opportunistic feeders in the wild. Being omnivores, they are open to eating almost anything that catches their attention.

Their natural diet is quite diverse and consists of different kinds of grasses, leaf litter, decaying wood, fallen fruits, and anything edible that washes up on the shore.

Even in captivity, these little guys have more or less similar dietary needs. If you use a single fruit as their treat for a while, they will get bored of it quickly. Thus, the trick to keep them happy is to keep feeding them a variety of fruits.

Following are the healthiest fruits that you can use to treat your pet crabs:

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Apples

Apples are one of the most nutrient-dense fruits that are available to us all year round. Hermit Crabs are totally in love with apples and would devour them at the first opportunity they get. But are these apples healthy for them? Let’s find out.

Apples are rich in calcium, a mineral that is essential for their exoskeletal health, and also adds plant-based protein to their diet. Moreover, like all brightly-colored fruits and vegetables, they contain beta-carotene as well.

Carotene is a vital micronutrient for the Hermit Crabs, for it maintains the bright color of their shell, making them appear much more attractive. The deficiency of Carotene in their diet gives them an overall dull appearance. Apples are also rich in antioxidants, which play a key role in maintaining your pet’s cell health.

Things to remember:

  • The outer skin of apples is rich in polyphenols and is, thus, equally healthy for Hermit Crabs, if not more. However, in order to feed them apples with their skin intact, you must always buy organic apples. It is because these apples are free from the risks of pesticides.
  • The seeds of apple contain a chemical compound called amygdalin. When these seeds break down inside your pet’s body, the amygdalin present inside degrades into hydrogen cyanide, which is lethal for all humans and animals alike; more so for your little pets. Thus, you should be extra cautious about removing these seeds from the apple before feeding it to your Hermit Crabs.

 

Grapes

Grapes are not only adored by Hermit Crabs but also the easiest to feed them among all the fruits. These fruits have no seeds or outer skin, which is why you can feed them to your pets as they are, without wasting any time in peeling or chopping them.

Grapes are rich in carbohydrates, which serve as the main source of energy for the Hermit Crabs. These fruits also contain fats in moderate amounts, which help them in building their cell membrane. Moreover, they have protein and calcium in abundance, both of which contribute to their exoskeletal health.

Things to remember:

  • While grapes need very little prepping, you must always remember to wash them thoroughly before feeding them to your pets. This ensures that you’ve gotten rid of any pesticides or insecticides that might’ve been sprayed on their surface.
  • Hermit Crabs can also eat grape jams and drink their juice in moderation. However, these should be home-made. Feeding them store-bought jams or juices could contain a number of added chemicals and preservatives and, thus, be detrimental to their health.

 

Watermelons

With a high content of water and sugar, watermelons can make a perfect juicy treat for your pet Hermit Crabs, especially on hot summer days. Although these fruits are about 90% water, it doesn’t mean they don’t have good nutritional value.

They contain Vitamins A, B-complex, and C, all of which can boost your pet’s immune system, their reproductive health, and enhance their overall growth and development.

Watermelons are also rich in a number of minerals, such as calcium, iron, magnesium, Potassium, Manganese, Copper, and Zinc.

Things to remember:

  • Feeding Hermit Crabs watermelon along with its rind is not a good idea. It is because these rinds are simply too tough to be consumed, even for humans. And even if your pet manages to break them down, they have quite high fiber content which can lead to digestive issues in them.
  • Before feeding the melons to your pets, you must remove all the seeds, for they contain a small amount of amygdalin that could never-the-less be detrimental to their health.

 

Mango

Mangoes are pulpy tropical fruits that are popular for their sweet, juicy taste and unique flavor. It would have been shocking if the Hermit Crabs wouldn’t love these bright and delicious treats. However, mangoes are known not only for the taste of their flesh but also for their diverse health benefits.

They are rich in a number of vitamins and minerals, including calcium, which is an indispensable nutrient for the exoskeleton of the Hermit Crabs. Moreover, they have Vitamins A and C in abundance.

While the former improves your pet’s vision, reproductive health, and overall well-being, the latter plays an essential role in their cardiovascular health and strengthens their immune system.

Things to remember:

  • While the skin of the mangoes is not inedible, it is simply unappetizing to the Hermit Crabs as it is to us. Thus, you should always serve them mangoes with their outer skin peeled off.
  • Mangoes are stone fruits that have one, large seed in the center. While it is too big for your pets to gobble up, you should still not give them these seeds, because they’re very much capable of breaking them open, and inside them, you can find traces of amygdalin.

 

Strawberries

With their bright color and sweet, squishy flesh, there’s no way your pet crabs would say no to strawberries. But do these berries also contribute to making them healthier? Yes, they do.

Strawberries are bright red in color, which is proof of the fact that they are rich in beta-carotene, a micronutrient that provides the Hermit Crabs with their rich coloration. They’re also rich in protein and calcium, which helps these crabs by making their exoskeleton stronger and healthier.

Moreover, strawberries also contain Ellagic acid, which is a polyphenol antioxidant that boosts the immune health of your little friends.

Things to remember:

  • Contrary to popular belief, the strawberries do not contain any real seeds. The seed-like structures that you can see on their surface are actually tiny ovaries that are completely safe for your pets to eat.
  • When feeding strawberries to the Hermit Crabs, you must positively cut off their top (calyx). It is because while the calyx itself is harmless, it is often sprayed with pesticides and insects to keep insects away from the fruit. These chemicals can be detrimental to your pet’s health if they get inside their body.

 

Papayas

Did you know that the World Health Organisation (WHO) has selected papaya to be the fruit with the highest nutritional value and, thus, the king of all fruits? With their sweet taste and soft flesh, they would make an incredible treat for your Hermit Crabs.

Papayas are rich in a number of vitamins, Potassium, and fibers. Moreover, they have anti-inflammation properties, are effective at preventing all kinds of infection, and promote faster wound healing in your pets.

Things to remember:

  • Although the outer skin of papayas is harmless and easy to chew, they are nutritionally empty and have the added risk of pesticides. This is why you should always remove the skin of papayas before feeding them to your pet crabs.
  • Papaya seeds have a number of health benefits. But since there is little data about their effect on the Hermit Crabs, it would be best not to feed them these.

 

Bananas

Known for the abundance of Potassium, bananas are irresistible treats for the Hermit Crabs that are drawn to their smell. These fruits are not only easy for your pets to chew, swallow and digest, but are very beneficial for their health as well.

Out of all the nutrients that are present in bananas, there are some that can enhance the health of your little friends. For instance, these fruits are rich in Vitamin C, which boosts the Hermit Crabs’ immune system.

Bananas also contain Manganese in abundance, which adds essential antioxidants to their body. Lastly, they have a high-fat content, making them an ideal treat for Hermit Crabs during their pre-molting days.

Things to remember:

  • The best way of feeding Hermit Crabs bananas is by mashing them; serving them banana slices comes second.
  • While banana peels are nutritious, they’re too tough for the Hermit Crabs to break down. Therefore, feeding them these peels can cause digestive issues and is a bad idea.
  • Due to their high sugar content, bananas are highly calorific, which is why you should feed these to your pets sparingly. We would recommend feeding them half a banana once a week.

 

Coconut

Coconuts are another tropical fruit that has a great appeal for the Hermit Crabs. They would eat them in all forms, be it fresh or dried.

Moreover, since these fruits are grown in the coastal areas, your pets might have already been well-acquainted with them in the wild. Coconuts are highly nutritional fruits, with an abundance of vitamins, nutrients, and fibers in them.

Things to remember:

  • Because of their high-calorie count, high sugar content, the abundance of fibers, and acidic nature, coconuts can harm the health of your little friends if not fed in moderation.
  • Both the milk and the oil extracted from the coconuts have a high-fat content as well, and should, therefore, not be fed to the Hermit Crabs.
  • While you can feed them coconut water in moderation, too much of it can lead to calcium deficiency in their body, as it is high in phosphorus.

 

Oranges

Many Hermit Crab-owners are against the idea of feeding any citrus fruit to their pets because of the rumors of these being harmful to them. This, however, is simply a myth.

In truth, these fruits are completely harmless to the Hermit Crabs. They’re also rich in Vitamin C, a vitamin that is responsible for the maintenance of their cardiovascular and immune systems. Moreover, they contain Carbohydrates, that provide them with energy, and calcium, which keeps their exoskeleton healthy.

Things to remember:

  • Unlike the fruits, the barks and leaves of the citrus plants are toxic to Hermit Crabs. Thus, you must make sure to keep your pets away from their plants altogether.
  • The orange seeds also contain a minute amount of amygdalin, which makes them dangerous for your pets. So, it is your job to ensure that these seeds never find their way into their body.
  • The orange peels are nutritious but have the possibility of being contaminated with pesticides. Moreover, they are also hard to chew and digest for your pets. Thus, feeding these to the Hermit Crabs is also discouraged.

 

Pineapples

Pineapples are another sweet treat that can be fed to your pet hermit crabs. They are loaded with vitamins and minerals, have several disease-fighting antioxidants, and consist of enzymes like bromelain that can promote their immunity and prevent them from any kind of inflammation.

Things to remember:

  • The outer skin of pineapples has small, thorn-like structures all over its surface that can prick and injure your Hermit Crabs if not removed carefully.
  • You should never feed your crabs the pineapple stalks, for they are often sprayed with pesticides to prevent the fruits from all insects.

 

Conclusion: Fruits that Hermit Crabs love to eat

Fruits are an integral part of a hermit crab diet, but those that you find in supermarkets can prove fatal to the little crustaceans. Provided above is a list of fruits that are safe to feed to hermies. You should always get them from a trusted vendor or, if you have your own fruit trees, gather fruits that have fallen on the ground and are starting to go bad.

These fruits should be fed to them in moderation. The next time you’re looking for ideas for sweet treats for your pets, the list given above can help you out.

 

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