Wednesday 19 October 2016

A Whole Lot of Leg

Image: NOAA
You might think that the strange thing about this deep sea Hermit Crab is that it's walking around with a giant flower on its arse...

But that's because you haven't seen it walk yet!

I don't know if I should laugh or run for my life! The poor blighter is ludicrously gawky - 'all elbows and knees' is the phrase that comes to mind, despite the fact that it's 100% knees. At the same time, there's a horrifying determination in those flailing footsteps. This is the ungainly gait of the serial killer at the end of the movie, when all the shadows have lifted and the only thing left is to chase some poor woman through an abandoned house/warehouse/motel/anywhere so long as it's dark and abandoned.

It's also the ungainly gait of a pagurid hermit crab. Like other hermit crabs, it walks with only four legs. Unlike most other hermit crabs, this one uses its other four legs to grab hold of a sea anemone rather than a snail's shell.

It also has, quite simply, a whole lot of leg!


TexWisGirl said...

that would be one of those 'fashion fail' pics from the red carpet. :)

Joseph JG said...

Haha! Yeah, that flowers leaves little to the imagination!

elfinelvin said...

I thought hermit crabs used shells for protection. I'm having trouble grasping what purpose the anemone might serve. Perhaps it's ornamental, like a bustle? :)

Joseph JG said...

Sometimes it's just nice to look nice!

Either that or the sea anemone's have sufficiently painful stings to ward off predators. It struck me that there really aren't a lot of really big snails with really big shells down there. Hermit crabs need SOMETHING!