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Top 7 Facts and Myths about Mud Crabs | Mud Crab Aquaculture

Throughout our research and experiences with mud crab aquaculture, we have encountered different myths and facts about them. Some of them are passed down through folklore, while some of them are by word of mouth, there are also facts and researches published on scientific journals. In this article we will be addressing some of these myths, verifying the facts to truly understand these unique creatures.

Fact #01- Mud Crabs are Nocturnal Creatures!

Mud crabs are most active at night. They usually forage for food and move about during the night. In the day, they prefer to hide in mud pits where they are safe from predators. As a result, most of the crab farmers will feed the crab early in the morning and late in the evening. Some farm operators even feed them suppers around midnight. Their activity and aggression level can be quite different from the daytime versus nighttime. Comparing our observation of the crabs in the morning, the actual conditions can be quite different at night. Most of the crabs that escape from their individual boxes occur during night time.

Fact #02- What are the soft shell crabs?

Similar to snakes, crabs have to shred off their shell (or known as the process called molting) in order to grow. Right after molting, the crabs will then proceed to absorb minerals from the water to harden their shells. If they are harvested before their shell hardens, they are known as soft-shelled crabs. Soft shell crabs can be produced in farms with mud crabs, blue swimming crabs, or any crabs in general. In Asia, soft-shelled crabs are commonly obtained by harvesting newly molted mud crabs. While in the United States, soft shell crabs (or known as peeler crabs) are harvested from blue-swimmers crabs.

Fact#03- A mosquito bite to the crab’s eye would not kill the crab.

The presence of mosquito will not threaten the livelihood of your crabs. It is commonly known that if the mosquitoes manage to sting the eyes of the crab, the crab will not survive. We have encountered farm operators going the extra mile to ensure no mosquitoes are near the crabs. Mosquitoes are attracted to warm blooded creatures, while crabs are cold blooded. Furthermore, some of the mud crabs, usually the broodstock used for hatchery production undergo a procedure called eyestalk ablation (where their eyes are cut off to stimulate egg production), and the crabs are able to survive this procedure.