6 Things Fiddler Crabs Like to Eat Most (Diet, Care & Feeding Tips)

What would cross your mind if someone asked you about foods that fiddler crabs eat in the wild waters? Does it ever worry you of what to feed your fiddler crabs in your aquarium?

Well, it shouldn’t worry you anymore. Here, we’ll talk about what do fiddler crabs eat.

These animals live in the waters, but you can also have them as your pets back at home. People love it because of its small body and funny habits in the crab family.

Also, its food won’t be hard to get. So, if you are ready, we’ll start by looking at the habits and biology of these animals.

Fiddler Crabs’ Habits and Biology

These animals are members of the crab family. So, their looks and habits won’t be different from that of normal crabs. Read on to see what behavior makes them unique from other crabs.



Though their habits identify these crabs from other water animals, the difference from their family isn’t that much. Below are the habits of fiddler crabs.

Fiddler crabs have the skill to live on land and in the waters. But unlike hermit crabs, they’ll spend most of their time in the water.

Remember, these small animals are very active. They can dig through the sand fast enough.

Also, to help them, they have gills and a unique lung. So, they can inhale with ease while on the waters and land.

The males use their claws to court females. Also, they use claws to dig small holes underwater as their homes. Another thing about these claws is that males use them to fight other males and look for food in the sand.

But it shouldn’t scare you. These animals always have peace. You can even place them with other crab species, and there won’t be any chaos.

It’s only the males that bring create problems. If you keep them and see that they fight, the solution is simple. Remove the aggressive ones and place them in a separate tub.

All other fiddler crabs use claws to talk to one another. They are very social.


The way that these crabs live is simple. Expect them to have a lifespan of two to three years. They will all these years if you give them social care and good living conditions.

Well, it’s because they aren’t immune to any health issues. They can also suffer and die at a young age.

You’ll find different types of fiddler crabs. The difference is in the body colors and some beautiful patterns that make them stand out. But besides the colors, all of them have a tough outer shell that keeps all their internal organs safe.

An adult fiddler crab is almost 2 inches wide. It shows that they are tiny in the crab family.

Also, all of them have ten feet. It helps them swim in the waters, mud and move while on land. Fiddler crabs use their two front legs as their claws.

Remember, it’s easy to separate a female fiddler crab from a male one. A mature female has tiny claws.

The males have one giant claw. This claw is bigger than the fiddler crab’s whole body. So, it’s why the males defend their homes by fighting.

Here is one fun fact about fiddler crabs. One thing you’ll notice about them is that they like waving using their claws. It helps them alert others that they are around.

What do Fiddler Crabs Eat in the Wild?

What do Fiddler Crabs Eat in the Wild

Before you choose to have them as your pets, it’s safe to learn what these animals are in the wild. But still, when it comes to eating, they are very simple animals.

What they eat is always available in the places they live in. So, let’s start with the eating habits of these animals.

Eating Habits

Fiddler crabs eat foods that come from dead living things. It’s why they are detritivores. These animals can also eat anything in the waters and sand.

Remember, they use their claws to eat. They get their nutrients after placing the substrate in the mouth.

These crabs look for food by burrowing through sand both in the water bed and land. Sometimes, you can see them remove sand balls from their mouth.

Also, to help them eat with much ease, these animals eat where there’s a puddle of water. They can put away sand from food.

Females have a better hand than males when it comes to eating. Well, it’s because their small pair of claws allow them to eat with ease. The large nails in males make it hard for them to take food into their mouths.

Foods Fiddler Crabs Eat in the Wild

Yes, these animals can eat anything in the wild. But there are those familiar things that fiddler crabs eat in the waters and also on land. Below are the foods they eat.

  • While in the waters, they can eat algae, fungi, and dead matter from substrates.

After eating the dead matter from substrates like dead fish, these animals get many nutrients to help their body grow. Expect them to get many minerals like iron, zinc calcium, among others.

To add to what calcium does to them, it helps the female fiddler crabs lay eggs with stronger shells. Minerals from the dead matter keep their body strong.

Fiddler crabs get many nutrients from algae and fungi. They give these animals vitamins A, E, C, B1, B2, B12, and B6.

Algae, fungi, and other green matter in the sea also give them minerals. Though they won’t grow to have large body sizes, it makes their bodies strong to survive different conditions.

  • While on land, they can eat tiny insects, some fruits, and vegetables.

The insects that these animals eat help them get proteins. These nutrients help the crabs repair their bodies if they get an injury.

It also helps their bodies grow fast. Insects help them get more minerals like iron and calcium. Calcium helps them make the hard shells that cover their bodies. Also, calcium helps fiddler crabs make claws.

Iron from insects helps them make body fluids. It allows their bodies to transport oxygen to other body parts.

The fruits and vegetables they eat while on land give them more vitamins and minerals too. So, with these nutrients, the fiddler crabs will now have a better immune system.

What do Fiddler Crabs Eat as Pets?

What do Fiddler Crabs Eat as Pets

Fiddler crabs are lovely pets you can keep. So, as you stay with them, here is what they can eat.

  • These animals can eat dry foods. You can buy and use them to feed the fiddler crabs in the tank.

The dry food you buy comes as a supplement. It has many nutrients that will make these crabs grow well. These supplements can include pellets, flakes, algae wafers, or dry cat food.

  • Also, you can give these fiddler crabs planktons. These are the vegetation of the sea bed. Remember, planktons give these animals more vitamins and minerals.
  • They can also eat shrimps while in the aquarium. Yes, while in the wild, fiddler crabs can get shrimps with ease. So while they are under your care, give them more shrimps.
  • Fiddler crabs also eat bloodworms. It helps them get many minerals and proteins in their body.
  • You can also give your fiddler crabs the seaweed. These foods can give your crabs the same nutrients that come from planktons.
  • Small insects are also good foods that your fiddler crabs can eat. They provide these animals with more proteins.
  • Sometimes, these crabs can eat blanched zucchini and peas. On top of that, they can also eat raw or cooked fish.
  • Since they can eat greens, then it means that fiddler crabs can also eat fruits and vegetables. It will help them with more vitamins and minerals in their bodies.

Tips to Feed Fiddler Crabs

Like any other pet, you should feed your pet well for it to live well. But what should you do to feed your fiddler crabs? Read on to see the tips to help you feed these animals.

  1. You should have a plan to help you feed your fiddler crabs well. As you keep feeding using this plan, these animals will adapt to how you handle them. Also, they’ll now know when they are supposed to eat.
  2. Ensure you feed your fiddler crabs only once a day. Anything more than that will be overfeeding.
  3. After they eat, remove every leftover. If you don’t, these foods will reduce the water quality in the tanks.
  4. As you feed them with pellets, place them into the water. Then, please sit back and watch the crabs run for them.
  5. If you give them food and they finish within an hour, you need to add them more. Well, it is because these crabs will be hungry. But start to give them less food if they don’t finish with 2 to 3 hours.
  6. The water you give should be black and salty. It will give the fiddler crabs a taste of what they get while in the wild. Remember, don’t put table salt in this water. Use tap water that has no chlorine. Then add some aquarium salt to increase the gravity of the water these crabs take.
  7. Don’t give your fiddler crabs insects, bloodworms, or shrimps that come from the wild. These foods might be carrying some poisons in them.


As you plan to keep fiddler crabs as your pets in a tank, it’s good to know what they eat. While in the wild, they can eat anything.

The females always have an easy time as they eat because of their small claws. But it’s not the same for the males because of their big claws.

As you feed these animals at home, do it once a day. Ensure you keep the water salty but don’t use table salt.

So, do you have fiddler crabs as pets at your home? Does it give you a hard time as you feed them? Feel free to share your insights with us.

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