The largest crab: large inhabitants of reservoirs

Crabs belong to the infraorder Decapod Crustacea. They have a small head and a short abdomen. They are found both in freshwater bodies and in the seas. In total, there are 6,780 types of crabs, all of different sizes and colors.

The smallest is the pea crab, the size of which does not exceed 2 mm. The largest crabs weigh 20 kg. Each has 10 legs and 2 claws. If he loses a claw, he can grow a new one, but it will be smaller.

They are omnivorous and feed on algae, fungi, crustaceans, worms and mollusks. Crabs move laterally. Learn more about the biggest short-tailed crayfish as crabs are also called, read our article.

10. Maltese freshwater crab, 150 g


As the name implies, this crab prefers fresh water bodies, namely streams, rivers and lakes, lives in holes, young individuals hide under stones. Their burrows are quite long, reaching up to 80 cm in length. They are his refuge not only from predators, but also from the cold.

Found in Southern Europe. An adult is up to 5 cm long, females are smaller than males. Maltese freshwater crab lives 10 to 12 years. He is omnivorous, can eat plants, frogs and tadpoles, will not refuse snails, worms.

Quite aggressive. There are no predators that would feed only on this type of crabs, but they can be hunted by birds, foxes, rats, ferrets. However, the most dangerous enemy for them is a person.

Maltese crab started to be eaten in ancient times. A catcher can collect from 3 to 10,000 crabs per season. They are threatened by overfishing.

9. Blue crab, 900 g


Their homeland is North and South America. blue crab chooses shallow waters and estuaries for life. Select a sandy or muddy bottom. He needs warmth. He, like all crabs, is omnivorous. If there is not enough food, he can eat his own. Its width is 18-20 cm, and its length is 7.5-10 cm. Males are slightly larger than females.

The blue crab got its name from the color of its shell, which can be not only brown, gray, but also greenish, with a blue tint.

It lives for two to four years. He hides most of his life. It is preyed upon by sea turtles, herring gulls and other animals. People catch it too, because. it is considered a delicacy.

8. Spiny crab, 2 kg


It is found in the northeastern Pacific Ocean, in the Bering and Okhotsk seas, in Kamchatka, near the Kuril Islands and near Sakhalin.

The width of its shell is 11-14 cm, females are slightly smaller – 10-13 cm and are covered with wide thick spikes. Weighs from 800 g to 2 kg. A comfortable depth for them is 25 m, but in southern waters they sink lower, they can reach a depth of 350 m.

When the water temperature drops, she can swim to the mouths of rivers, where it is not so cold. He was able to adapt to fresh water. spiny crab red or burgundy. Its flesh is a real delight, it is sweet, juicy, satisfying.

7. Snow crab opilio, 2 kg


His other name is common snow crab, it lives off the Bering Sea and the Sea of ​​Okhotsk, is also found in Canada, off Greenland, etc. It can be at a depth of 13 to 2 thousand meters.

The width of the crab is 16 cm, the leg span can reach 90 cm, females are 2 times smaller than males. Their carapace is reddish in color, covered with tubercles and spikes. The opilio snow crab feeds on benthic invertebrates. There may also be carrion. They have a sweet meat, rich in protein and low in fat.

6. Coconut crab, 4 kg


Despite its name, it is not a crab, but a type of decapod crayfish. It is also called palm thief. So they call him because they believed he could climb palm trees and cut coconuts from them, then eat the pulp of a cracked nut. Moreover, if the coconut is not split, he easily opens it with his claws.

But biologists say coconut crab does not know how to extract walnuts, but does not hesitate to feast on “padan” torn by the wind.

The palm thief measures up to 40 cm and has very strong claws with which it can crush small bones. It feeds on coconuts, pandan fruits and other crustaceans. Lives in shallow burrows lined with coconut fibres, sometimes hiding in rock crevices. Can climb a tree.

5. Blue crab, 4 kg


It is also a craboid, that is, outwardly similar to a crab, but refers to hermit crabs. Outwardly similar to king crab. Its width can reach twenty-two centimeters in males and slightly less in females. Weight – up to five kilograms.

The body is red with a brown tint that shimmers with blue, and the bottom is yellowish-white, there are orange spots. It is covered with ears of corn; young crabs have tubers instead of cobs.

They live quite a long time, from 22 to 25 years. This species can be found in the seas of Japan, Bering and Okhotsk. blue crab are used for food.

4. Large land crab, 3 kg


Other names – Chestnut Where edible crab, because it is reddish-brown. Its shape is similar to that of a closed pie. The width of the shell of an adult individual can reach 25 cm, but, as a rule, 15 cm, it weighs up to 3 kg. The length is most often about 6 cm in males, and almost 10 cm in females, and up to 15 cm in some individuals.

He lives in the North Sea, in the Atlantic Ocean. Prefers to hide in cracks and holes in rocks, leads a nocturnal life. large land crab feeds on crustaceans, molluscs, pursues its prey or lures it into an ambush.

Its main enemies are octopuses, as well as humans. They are caught in large numbers, so in 2007, 60,000 tons were caught around the British Isles, which is why this type of crab almost disappeared there.

3. Tasmanian king crab, 6.5 kg


Tasmanian king crab or, as it is also called, tasmanian giant crab – one of the largest in the world, its width can reach 46 cm, its weight can reach up to 13 kg. Males are mainly distinguished by their size, which is 2 times larger than females. It has a light color with red spots.

This type of crab can be found in southern Australia, at a depth of 20 to 820 m, but prefers a depth of 140 to 270 m. It feeds on molluscs, starfish and crustaceans.

They are hunted, because. These crabs have a lot of meat and it’s good. Off the coast of Australia, one of the representatives of this species was caught, whose name was Claude. The British Aquarium bought it for £3,000. Despite the fact that he was quite young, then he weighed about 7 kg, but, according to experts, having matured, Claude can become 2 times heavier.

2. King crab, 8 kg


king crab – also a craboid, that is, outwardly very similar to a crab, but refers to hermit crabs. It is the largest living crustacean in the Far East. It is red-brown, yellowish below, with purple spots on the sides. In width, it grows up to 29 cm, plus limbs that reach 1-1.5 m.

For life, he chooses an area with a sandy bottom, a depth of 2-270 m. He likes to live in cool water of medium salinity. He prefers to lead a mobile life, constantly on the move.

They tried to breed the king crab in the Barents Sea, after several unsuccessful attempts everything was successful, it began to breed successfully there. The Kamchatka crab feeds on sea urchins, crustaceans, molluscs, small fish, starfish.

1. Japanese spider crab, 20 kg


The span of a pair of legs can reach three meters. It is found in the Pacific Ocean, near Japan, at a depth of 50-300 m, the length of its body can reach 80 cm, and with its legs up to 6 m, it weighs 16-20 kg .

Catching it is not so easy, because. with its claws, it can seriously injure. japanese crab – a treat. Once upon a time, 27-30 tons were caught per year, but now the catch has been reduced to 10 tons, during the crab breeding season, that is. spring, you can’t touch them.

They themselves eat both plant and animal food and do not refuse carrion. Their natural enemies are octopus and squid.

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