Striped Shore Crabs

Crab Life

All crabs are very interesting arthropods. Firstly, out of 900,000 known species of the world are the arthropods, and crabs are the biggest ones. As well as being the biggest arthropods, crabs are the biggest crustaceans. Secondly, the smallest crabs are mini pea crabs. The pea crabs have a shell less than one-quarter inch across in length. Thirdly, giant spider crabs reside in Japan, and they are the biggest crab of all. If this crab stretched its legs out in front of a diver, it would be wider than the diver. Crabs are brain-teasing arthropods.

Crabs have an interesting body set. A crab's head and thorax connects into a part called the cephalothorax. In most species of arthropods, the cephalothorax is broad and flattened. (Please see the photo below that illustrates the cephalothorax.) All the crabs' cephalothoraxes may vary.

A picture of a striped shore crab in a tide pool, Pacific Grove, CA, July 2012

Seeing a Shore Crab at Your Local Tidepool

On the Pacific Coast, you can see anthropods in action: striped shore crabs at your local tidepool--during low tide that is. At high tide, they will be whirling and skittering around under the waves.

Striped shore crabs are interesting animals. The crab is adaptable and you can come across it anywhere in damp places on the rocky shore line. These crabs live in burrows along soft, sandy banks. They can be colored red or black with green stripes laying on their carapaces. Striped shore crabs scavenge for pieces of seaweed and sometimes limpets. They can be viewed quickly scooping algae up. These crabs are animals that are amazing!

Crabs in the Zodiac

People born in late June and July are lucky to follow the crab zodiac sign, cancer. These individuals like to nurture other people. The gem that they seek is the moonstone, not surprising given that real crabs may hide amongst the luminous rocks. And of course, Cancers seek the water element, so appropriate for those with summer birthdays.

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