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Red Mangrove Crab


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Product Description

Temperature Range: 73 – 82 F.
PH: 7.5-8.5
Diet: Omnivore
Habitat: Freshwater to slightly brackish
Life Span: 3-5 years
Species: Sesarma mederi Size: 1 ½ to 2”

Large red mangrove crabs originate the mudflats and mangroves from Hong Kong to China. They are mainly found near small areas of freshwater along river banks. The water in the mangroves is a mixture of salty sea water and fresh river water. In aquariums, they live in freshwater, but they must also have terrain in the aquarium as well. The red mangrove crab is also called red freshwater crab. Their bodies are a brownish color, and they may have lighter colored undersides. Male red mangrove crabs have large, bright red pincers, with cream colored tips. Females have smaller, dark red pincers, and the males are more subdued in color. Red mangrove crabs have hair on their legs. They grow up to 2” in size. Red mangrove crabs must be in a tank with a secure lid because they can climb out and escape if given the opportunity. Although their water should primarily be fresh, a little bit of sea salt can be added to their water to make it more like the mangroves they originate from. This is not brackish enough for crabs or shrimp needing truly brackish water, however. They can live up to 5 years in captivity if well-cared for. The tank must be kept warm and with a high level of humidity as well for optimal care. They are sensitive to nitrites, so the tank should be well-cycled before adding red mangrove crabs. A sandy substrate with lots of vines, rocks, and pieces of wood will make the red mangrove crab feel most at home. They will spend most of their time out of the water, climbing or sitting on rocks, vines, and wood. A light colored substrate will make them most noticeable in the aquarium. Red mangrove crabs are omnivores, and will eat a variety of foods. They eat meat, such as brine shrimp, bloodworms, dried fish, snails, and pieces of earth worms. They will also eat fresh vegetables such as peas, cucumbers, spinach, etc. You can feed red mangrove crabs a wide range of packaged foods, such as algae flakes, shrimp pellets, and fish flakes. You can also give red mangrove crabs extra calcium in the form of eggshells, cuttlebone, or cuttlefish. They will eat their own discarded exoskeletons for calcium as well. Red mangrove crabs molt in fresh water, and they will bury themselves in the substrate until their exoskeleton has hardened. You should leave the discarded exoskeleton in the tank as the crab will eat it; it is a good source of calcium for the crab. Red mangrove crabs are sociable, and they will do well with other red mangrove crabs. Males are territorial however, so don’t put more than one in your tank. Other small fish, shrimp, and crabs make good tank mates for them. Red mangrove crabs will spend a lot of time digging, burrowing, and climbing on and in rocks, caves, and wood. They are attractive crabs and look nice in hobby aquariums. Red mangrove crabs are relatively easy to keep, but make sure their water temperature is properly maintained. Nitrite levels should be monitored, as a nitrite peak could kill the red mangrove crab. 

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