What do Hermit Crabs Eat? Best Food & Diet

Bringing a new pet home always involves drastic research from many different sources, as we all tend to be the best caregivers and provide the happiest life possible to our pets.

When it comes to hermit crabs, one of the most researched questions is surely related to their diet plan. So, what do hermit crabs eat?

To ease your further feeding investigation out, we are sharing the complete nutritive requirements for these super-funny creatures.

Hermit Crab Food & Diet

Hermit crabs are omnivores. That said, it is easy to conclude they need a vast variety of nutritive values, including both tasty meat and healthy greens. But not only they are omnivores, but they are additionally little scavengers, too.

That basically means they will happily accept any food you offer to them. However, not all food is healthy so it is up to you, the owner, to choose their meals wisely.

To start, try selecting high-quality commercial food for your hermit crabs, as this has to be their basic feeding source when kept as pets.

This is the best and safest way to ensure they are getting all the nutritive values they require to grow healthy. We will write about commercial food choices a bit more in details below.

Next, make sure to include daily portions of fresh food and treats. Whereas these may be fish or meat or greens or anything else, it is important to constantly change these so they do not get bored. Same as people would.

For instance, you can include a previously cooked part of chicken meat (un-spiced!) one day and then some tasty brine shrimps the other.

When it comes to vegetables, you can generally offer any sort to your hungry hermits but try avoiding those with extremely low nutritive values such as iceberg lettuce and those which are starchy like potatoes.

Same goes for fruity treats- all are perfectly acceptable as long as they are not citrus fruits. They really seem to enjoy both fresh and dried fruits, so feel free to include a variety of those.

Cool meals which will certainly remind them of their natural habitats are seaweed, tree leaves and even strips of bark from deciduous trees.

Furthermore, you can sometimes also offer them some typical processed human food. Unsalted nuts, unsalted or low-salt crackers, plain rice cakes, unsweetened cereals and plain air-popped popcorn are all great and perfectly acceptable choices of occasional food.

Rarely, you can even share a bit of your favorite peanut butter with your pets.

Choices are almost endless here, so try offering them a great variety of food and snacks but to always rotate them.

Commercial Food

Returning back to commercial food, it is crucially important to select those of highest quality, as these will make their basic and daily-present meals.

To ease the selection out, we have done the job and found the best three. These are all great as they can be ordered online, so they are easy to get nonetheless on where you live and what your local pet stores offer.

  1. Jurassidiet Hermit Crab Formula
  2. Fluker’s Buffet Blend Diet
  3. Zoo Med Hermit Crab Food

Do Hermit Crabs Need Calcium?

Hermit crabs definitely need calcium enrichment as this is vitally important for a proper and healthy grow of their exoskeletons. There are various ways of how to ensure your pets are getting enough of their needed doses.

There are commercial calcium vitamin supplements available online and in most pet stores which can simply be added to their meals. However, there are also natural yet effective ways of providing healthy calcium doses to your hermit pets.

These include cuttlebone (either in one piece or shredded), crushed oyster shell and even crushed eggshell (previously boiled and dried).

How Often to Feed Hermit Crab?

These odd pets are really small, so they really do not require large amounts of food or frequent feeding plans. A general rule which seems to be vastly suitable is feeding your hermit crabs once per day.

Also, since they are mostly nocturnal animals and prefer feeding while you are sleeping, it is best to offer them food during evening times. And it is highly suggestable to remove all food leftovers from their enclosures in the morning.

Food leftovers can bring to various complications if left uneaten for a while. Indeed, if they find themselves in the substrate, such leftovers will mold and eventually allow bacteria to grow.

Additionally, uneaten food can attract fruit flies to the enclosure. The less time- and effort-taking way of cleaning food residues is by simply scooping them out on a daily basis, same as you should be doing for hermit’s waste.

How Long Can Hermit Crabs go Without Food?

Unfortunately, this is a fact which still needs to be completely researched and proven. A general rule for these beings is they do not eat while molting, so they can basically go without food as long as their current molting process is in phase.

Wild hermit crabs are known to survive up to 30 years or more, so it is really difficult to investigate how long do their molting phases last when being that big. However, when they are being active, they should not be left without food for more than a week.

Wrapping Up

Hermit crabs are surely one of the favorite scavenger pets these days. They do not require a lot of space neither exhaustible efforts from their owners, but they are so fun to observe and we simply love having them around our homes.

And when it comes to feeding, they will be pleased with basically anything we offer them. What a dream pet, right?

Keep your hermit pets healthy by offering them high-quality commercial pellets each day, as this is the best and safest way to provide them all the nutritive values they deserve.

But feel free to play around with all other fresh meals you will be including into their diet. These omnivores can eat almost anything as long as it is not refined or spiced.

Hermit Crabs   Invertebrates   Updated: February 19, 2021
avatar I’m Noah, chief editor at VIVO Pets and the proud owner of a playful, energetic husky (Max). I’ve been a volunteer at Rex Animal Rescue for over 2 years. I love learning and writing about different animals that can be kept as pets.
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