Giant Mud Crab| Amazing Facts Recipes And Habitat

Giant mud crabs are crab species living in estuaries and mangroves of Asia and Africa. Mud crab is economically prevalent species. Its other names are Scylla strata, swimming crab, mangrove crabs, and edible mud crab. Its ranges start from South Africa and end around the coast of India.

Giant mud crab characteristics

Giant mud crab characteristics:

The giant crabs may have a carapace width of about 28 cm and weigh about 3 kg. Its carapace has a precise cervical groove and nine teeth in the margin, which is oval-shaped and pointed on each side. 

Its pincers are hairless, and its four legs are flat, like swimming legs. Two distinct thorns are present on the half end of one side of the pincer joint. Males and females have pincers and swimming legs covered with a dark green pattern.

Their body consists of powerful chelipeds with well-designed spines on the carpus and the posterior parts of the propodus. The legs of giant mud crabs have green and black colored lines. In the most common appearance, their color may be changed from green to very dark brown.

The female mud crabs have rounded flapped shells, and the male’s shell is a V-shaped flap.

Mud crabs use their strong claws to protect themselves and escape their prey. A new nail may regrow after 3-4 months.

Diet:

Mud crabs eat mollusks and crustaceans and fish and plant material. The proper feed can increase the mud crab’s growth and prevent them from diseases.  

You can feed them these things.

3. Trash fish

The most famous food source of giant mud crabs is trash fish. Depending upon the size of the crabs, fish may be cut down into small pieces and given to the crabs. Crabs are attracted mainly by the blood of the fish. Crabs depend heavily on chemoreceptors that identify changes in the water. Trash fish are preferred because of their availability and low cost.

    2 . Squids 

The giant mud crabs also need fats to promote growth. Squids are full of fats and lipids extracted from squid oil. So, Squids are the best diet for mud crabs. 

Besides growth, squids also boost the development of mature ovaries in females. Squids provide extra nutrition to the mud crabs as compared to trash fish.

   3 . Formulated feed| Giant Mud Crab

The formulated feed has attained popularity in previous years. Like trash fish, the formulated feed contains fish meat and a high level of amino acids. If the formulated feed is dried, you can store it until use.

The shape of formulated feed is designed according to the crab’s size. Initially, the mud crabs may not like this formulated feed, but gradually you can get them used to it. 

   4 . Shellfish

Mud crabs prefer mostly shellfish and mollusks. Common shellfishes include marsh calms, cockles, and mussels. Mud crabs use their strong claws to capture and open these shellfish. Shellfish are rich in lipids and fats that increase the growth rate of crabs.

   5 . Natural food

Another essential part of the crab’s diet is a natural food that is best for the growth of mud crabs. Sunlight in ponds grows algae and flocculates together. Other animals like amphibians and nematodes feed on the flocculates. The higher organisms and algae are the best food source for mud crabs.

Giant mud crab breeding

Giant mud crab breeding:

The mud crabs drift offshore to spawn. They become adults when they reach about 9 cm carapace in width. Mainly they attain their full size in the first year of their life.

The male mud crabs go towards the females before the females experience a precopulatory molt. Males grasp the females with their chelipeds and front legs. Males carry them for a day until the female molts them.

A mature female produces about two million eggs that take approximately two weeks to hatch.

Molting: Giant Mud Crab

The giant mud crabs have a hard exoskeleton which protects them from harsh environmental factors. The considerable mud crabs shed their old exoskeleton by molting. 

Before molting, mud carbs absorb nutrients to develop the underlying shell. The underlying layer saves the crab after molting.

After molting, the crab’s shell remains soft and keeps up to absorb the nutrients intake in its body. It starts to grow a new cover.

The molting period depends upon the age of the crab. The old crabs take a long time to molt. The best molting process requires a high amount of energy to execute. 

Apart from the molting, the mud crabs exchange their gills and gut. It is essential to remember that molting allows pathogens to enter their body. These pathogens weaken the ability to store energy, resulting in the death of mud crabs before and during molting.

Are giant mud crabs edible

Are giant mud crabs edible?

The giant mud crabs are the best dish to eat. It is rich in protein and low in fat which is the best food option for humans. Its meat, found in the body and claws, has a fantastic flavor. Giant mud crabs are prevalent seafood among seafood lovers.

The taste of a mud crab may be fishy. It may taste salty and oceanic.

You should clean all the parts before cooking. First, remove the hard shell and then the grey gills. Divide it into two parts and clean it.

When mud crabs are heated, their color changes from red to orange. Before cooking, you should use vinegar to enhance its taste. It also makes it easier to remove the shell.

Conclusion:

The giant mud crabs grow up to 9 inches and can get a size of 11 inches. They reproduce throughout the year, but March to April is the best time to breed. They taste ideally like stone crabs and are full of meat. 

Giant mud crabs can tolerate salinity and live in freshwater for a short time. They can breathe when their gills are moist; when their gills become dried, they will die.

Turtles, large fish, crocodiles, and sharks are significant predators of the giant mud crab. The mud crabs have strong claws. It may crush your finger if it grabs you.

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