She explains that, well, she got these two hermit crabs as a Christmas present from a relative or something and, you know, she's already got all these other animals to care for (she really does have her hands full) and having these two other little fellers to look after is just two things more than she can fit into her daily diary so she asked me, "Would you like some crabs? If I gave you these two hermit crabs would you take them home and take care of them?"
I gave it a moment's thought, but not more, and said, "Sure!"
And I'll tell you what, I'm glad I did. They're great. I love them. They're the perfect pet for me. No yapping, no yowling, no pooping (or not that I can see), none of that needy, "Pet me" bullshit... no shedding. They do molt, I've read, but infrequently and then they eat the remaining exoskeletal husk for the calcium.
And, man, K-leen gave me everything to go with, too! There's a nice, clear plastic cage with an orange plastic lid and a handle (looks a little like a lunch box) and its got this crazy, bright-orange sand in the bottom with a little, plastic palm tree sticking up out of it and a clam shell for water and another smaller one for food. And I got a little bag of crab food and a little thingy of hermit crab treat (from the good people at Florida Marine Research, oh yes!) which contains, um, let's see now... papaya, coconut, pineapple, sea salt, banana chips, apples, mangoes, rolled oats and wheat germ. Goddamn, man! These crabs are eating better than me! What the...
Anyhow, so the one there in the purple conch shell's named Lil' Trixie and the dude in the more traditional snail shell is The Scrubber. Those are their names, whether they know it or not. And let me tell you those little blighters can really kick up a fuss when the sun goes down! Scrubber's clearly the alpha-crab there in the lunch box. Poor Trix is just coming in for some water and pretty soon ol' Scrub's got her cut off at the pass with his two front legs extended in what I assume is some sort of a show of dominance or territoriality or God-only-knows-what. Oh, and they chirp at night, too! Did you know hermit crabs do that? Anyway...
So, yeah, it's non-stop, late night, crustacean hi jinx for me, now.
Thanks for the crabs, Kathleen!