Animal Species:Soldier Crab

The Soldier Crab lives in sandy estuaries and mangroves, and occurs in massive groups that seem to emerge from nowhere all at the same time.

Standard Common Name

Soldier Crab

Identification

The Soldier Crab is quite distinctive with its small, round, blue body on long jointed legs with purple stripes. As it marches around feeding, it moulds the sand into numerous pellets, sorting through it for organic matter. There is only one other species of soldier crab common in Sydney. This is the smaller Mictyris platycheles.

Size range

15 cm

Distribution

Soldier Crabs are found from Northern Queensland, New South Wales, to Wilsons Promontory in Victoria. Also, western Indian Ocean to French Polynesia.

Habitat

Soldier Crabs live on intertidal mangroves, beaches and estuaries.

Other behaviours and adaptations

It is thought that the spontaneous arrival of Soldier Crabs is triggered by the falling tide. If disturbed, they burrow into the sand with a corkscrew motion, disappearing as quickly as they arrived.

Classification

Species:
longicarpus
Genus:
Mictyris
Family:
Mictyridae
Infraorder:
Brachyura
Suborder:
Pleocyemata
Order:
Decapoda
Superorder:
Eucarida
Subphylum:
Crustacea
Phylum:
Arthopoda
Kingdom:
Animalia

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Tags crabs, crustaceans, arthropods, invertebrates, wildlife of sydney, identification,

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