Christmas is approaching fast across the world and many countries use the colours red and green to decorate during the festive season.

This week I came across a Hermit Crab that had also chosen red, but out of necessity. It is a rather large Hermit Crab that has obviously outgrown its shell and in the search for a shell that is more suitable it has found itself in an awkward situation. It obviously could not find a shell big enough, but it did come across something that would suffice. A red lid would do the job!

Xmas Hermit Crab

Xmas Hermit Crab (2)

Hermit Crab using a lid instead of a shell

It chose to head for the water as the tide was coming in and could manoeuvre very well with its light covering.

Xmas Hermit Crab (3)

Hermit Crab heading for the sea

Xmas Hermit Crab at the sea

Hermit Crab at the tides edge

It didn’t quite get the height of the tide right and got dumped, which actually has advantages if you use plastic as you float quite well!

Xmas Hermit Crab getting dumped!

Hermit Crab gets dumped by the waves

The beach was covered with smaller Hermit Crabs and I was intrigued to watch the others approach it with its brightly covered home.

Xmas Hermit Crab makes friends

Christmas Hermit Crab being investigated by other hermit Crabs

One actually went right up to it and I don’t know what they thought of each other, but it was rather fun to watch.

Xmas Hermit Crab's new friend

Christmas Hermit Crab makes a friend!

Of course I am now faced with a dilemma as I often see things on the beach that are not natural, but I also see a lack of large shells suitable for large Hermit Crabs. I would appeal to people to not take shells home that are suitable homes for other creatures. As to whether or not I should remove plastic lids…well I just don’t know! This is the second time I have seen this, but last time it was a small clear plastic lid and it wasn’t Christmas!

We would like to take this opportunity to wish everyone a Merry Christmas from Australia and we will be spending the day doing our own little traditional Christmas Day bird list!

Written by Clare M
Clare and her husband, Grant, have lived permanently in Broome, Western Australia since 1999 after living in various outback locations around Western Australia and Darwin. She has lived in the Middle East and the United States and traveled extensively in Europe. She monitors Pied Oystercatchers breeding along a 23km stretch of Broome's coastline by bicycle and on foot. She chooses not to participate in social media, but rather wander off into the bush for peace and tranquility. Thankfully she can write posts in advance and get away from technology!