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16 October 2011

Clickety click click click


Photo of Port Hedland hermit crabs copyrighted to Maizy Daizy, 2011. Thank you!

Walking home from the supermarket tonight at dusk, we came across what I initially thought was a leaf blowing in the wind. On closer examination, I discovered it was a hermit crab clicking its way across the footpath down towards the sandy beach. Not wanting to step on it, Rob picked the poor thing up and placed it gently on the dunes and we continued on our way. But not even ten metres later, we came across another, and then another. Dozens of the crabs, just the one in Maizy Daizy's photo above, were making their way towards the beach from what appeared to be otherwise residential houses... The clicking of their claws on the cement sounding like a minuscule percussive orchestra.

We have been in Port Hedland for over a month now, and we have walked that same route to the supermarket numerous times to date, but we have never seen this before. What brings them out today? Is it a part of their mating season behaviour, just like the crabs on Christmas Island? The full moon? And where were they coming from? Who knows? But whatever it was, it made our walk much more interesting!

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