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Saltwater Aquarium Cleaner Crabs

Saltwater Crabs are a must have cleaner for any reef aquarium. But it's important to know what saltwater aquarium crabs are fine for reef tanks and which ones would be reef destroyers. Happily for reef aquarist's there are a number of saltwater crabs that are the perfect reef tank janitors to keep problems like hair algae, bubble algae, cyano bacteria, and excess food (detritus) all under control.

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Porcelain Anemone Crabs
Neopetrolisthes ohshimai
Picture of Porcelain Anemone Crab


Description: The Porcelain Anemone Crab is white with red spots and/or blotches of red or brown. They have very large front claws which they use to fend off potential predators. They are peaceful, and make a wonderful addition to any reef or invertebrate aquarium. Like the clown fish, this crab has developed an immunity to anemone stings. Porcelain Anemone Crabs live together in pairs under the protection of an anemone. It may attempt to defend its territory from clownfish that try to establish themselves among the anemone, although the clownfish generally prevails.

Diet and Feeding: .It eats planktonic food and mucus from the anemone. It may be supplemented with tablet food placed next to the anemone.

Reef Compatability: Excellent will not harm inverts or corals

Level of Care: Easy

Approximate Purchase Size: 1/2" to 1"


Price Each $7.99


Sponge Crab
Picture of Sponge Crab
A crab that wears sea sponges like a hat!
Description: By carrying sponge and other items on their backs make sponge crabs look somewhat comical, but is an effective form of protection. They cover themselves with items like ocean sponge, little pieces of rock and shell, pieces of marine plant, and other items it can use as camouflage to keep itself in stealth mode. With the same intentions, in the reef aquarium the sponge crab will gather whatever it finds and likes. It will find pieces of plant or algae, pieces of coral such as living polyps and other soft corals it finds, to cover itself. Best suited for a reef aquarium with plenty of live rock for hiding and food. This species as with all crustacean species should not be kept with species that will eat crustaceans, such as triggerfish and puffers.

Diet and Feeding: The diet of the Sponge Crab should include meaty foods such as frozen brine or mysis shrimp, mussels or pieces of fish. This species will also eat any foods that get by the fish in the aquarium, making them great for keeping the aquarium free of excess and decaying food stuffs.

Reef Compatability: Yes with caution

Level of Care: Easy

Approximate Purchase Size: 1"

Price Each $13.99

Sally Lightfoot Crabs
Percnon gibbesi
Picture of Sally Lightfoot Crab


Description: The Sally Lightfoot Crab, also known as the Nimble Spray, Short, or Urchin Crab. With their brown body and orange to yellow rings on their legs, Sally Lightfoots are a reef-safe crab, very active algae eaters and enjoy feeding off of algae on rockwork. Because of their flatness, they can easily keep themselves hidden under rocks and coral. They prefer a strong current and will require an aquarium with large amounts of rock work where it can hide and scavenge for detritus.

Diet and Feeding: Care needs to be taken to ensure an ample supply of food is available. Many supplement their diet with dried seaweed and chopped meaty foods, such as shrimp, and/or a quality pellet fish food. Like other invertebrates, it can not tolerate copper-based medications.

Reef Compatability: Yes

Level of Care: Easy

Approximate Purchase Size: 1" to 2"


Price Each $11.99

Ruby Emerald Crab
Picture of Ruby Emerald Crab
Excellent Algae Eater including Bubble Algae!
Description: Ruby Emerald Crabs are reef-safe algae eaters and an excellent addition to your cleaner crew. They are in the same family as Green Emerald Crabs and therefore also are great algae control critters. They are one of the few inverts that will eat nuisance bubble algae which makes them very popular among reef keepers. They have dull tipped claws that they use to pick various types of algae from the rockwork. They are wonderful crabs to observe with beautiful ruby bumpy bodies and pink hairy legs, a great crab for any reef! We rec'd 1 per 25 gallons

Diet and Feeding: Care needs to be taken to ensure an ample supply of food is available. Many supplement their diet with dried seaweed and chopped meaty foods, such as shrimp, and/or a quality pellet fish food. Like other invertebrates, it can not tolerate copper-based medications.

Reef Compatability: Excellent will not harm inverts or corals

Level of Care: Easy

Approximate Purchase Size: 1"


Price Each $9.99
Pack of 3 $28.50 (9.50 ea.)
Pack of 6 $54.00 (9.00 ea.)
Pack of 12 $102.00 (8.50 ea.)


Halloween Hermit Crab
Ciliopagurus strigatus
Picture of Halloween Hermit Crab
Description: The Halloween Hermit Crab is probably the brightest colored hermit crabs available. One of the most attractive and colorful crabs you can add to your tank comes from the Hawaiian Islands. The Halloween Hermit Crab gets its name from the bright orange coloration and banding of its legs and eyes. It is a scavenger that will eat left over detritus on the substrate, and will also eat cyanobacteria and hair algae. It will also help aerate substrate and help with good bacteria growth. For the most part Halloween Hermit Crabs can be kept in just about any size aquarium from 10 gallons on up. A peaceful and easy to care for crab that is great in any reef or invertebrate tank.

Diet and Feeding: Care needs to be taken to ensure an ample supply of food is available. Many supplement their diet with dried seaweed and chopped meaty foods, such as shrimp, and/or a quality pellet fish food. Like other invertebrates, it can not tolerate copper-based medications.

Reef Compatability: Excellent will not harm inverts or corals

Level of Care: Easy

Approximate Purchase Size: 3/4" to 1-1/4"


Price Each $11.99
Pack of 5 $55.00 (11.00 ea.)
Pack of 10 $100.00 (10.00 ea.)




Thin Striped Hermit Crab
Clibanarius vittatus
Picture of Thin Striped Hermit Crab
Description: The Thin Striped Hermit Crab, (Clibanarius vittatus) is good at removing hair algae, film algae, detritus and cyanobacteria from your tank, and it will also scavenge detritus and excess food. Tank size for a critter like this will largely depend on the structure of it. They would do fine in a 10g species only hermit tank, with minimal rock and lots of sand. A good choice for the kids, these guys are very hardy and aren't shy. If you were adding it to a fish and mobile invert only tank, it would do well in a 50g or larger.

Diet and Feeding: Care needs to be taken to ensure an ample supply of food is available. Many supplement their diet with dried seaweed and chopped meaty foods, such as shrimp, and/or a quality pellet fish food. Like other invertebrates, it can not tolerate copper-based medications.

Reef Compatability: Excellent will not harm inverts or corals

Level of Care: Easy

Approximate Purchase Size: 1/2" to 3/4"




Price Each $6.99
Pack of 3 $19.50 (6.50 ea.)
Pack of 6 $36.00 (6.00 ea.)
Pack of 12 $66.00 (5.50 ea.)





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