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2872 Views 2 Replies Last post: Apr 5, 2012 2:49 PM by Robert Perger RSS
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May 8, 2011 10:02 PM

One for the crab experts

I believe this crab to be a Satanic graveyard robber crab (Cardisoma quantami) from Bermuda which is extremely rare. I was wondering if anyone could give me any identification points as reading around the internet there is little to help confirm, in fact put doubt in my mind about my initial identification.

The behaviour of this crab is quite different to other land crabs in that rather than rasing its claws in a defensive stance, it raises its rear legs, givimg it the appearance of having two horns. This is what is leading me to believe it is C.quantami.


If anyone can help or point me in the right direction, it would be greatly appreciated.


  • Currently Being Moderated
    Nov 12, 2011 10:58 PM (in response to bcoulson)
    Re: One for the crab experts

    Yes, I believe this is Cardisoma quantami - quite different to the other Cardisoma's in the Caribbean.

    I am interested in, and would like to know if there are ever any "crab hunting expeditions" organised by or within the Natural History Museum. For example a trip out to find this rare crab, for example, would have me excited. Andrew

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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Apr 5, 2012 2:49 PM (in response to bcoulson)
    Re: One for the crab experts


    this beautiful land crab is Gecarcinus ruricola  Linnaeus, 1758 and occurs on Bermuda together with Gecarcinus lateralis and Cardisoma guanhumi.

    It is actually not rare within its distribution range (Caribbean Islands) but might be rare on some islands because of impact by humans and introduced predators.

    In fact the species Cardisoma quantami has never been described and does not exist. Cardisoma could be distinguished from Gecarcinus by having hairs below their eyes and the carapace margin between the upper eye margins is not fused with the carapace margin between the lower eye margins. Another good character particularly in Gecarcinus ruricola is that the mouth could be completely covered by the movable maxillipeds. This feature is related to the different lifestyles of Gecarcinus and Cardisoma: Cardisoma is an amphibious genus, closely associated with a burrow containing ground water. Gecarcinus is highly terrestrial and forages up to 300 m a.s.l. - it is protected by water loss because the maxillipeds could cover the mouth opening.

    best regards,


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