The Coconut Crab
Sometimes when people walk around beaches of the Pacific Ocean’s islands like Hawaii, they can see a giant crab-looking creature. It’s called a coconut crab.
A very interesting fact is coconut crabs eat poison. Actually they eat poisonous fruit to protect themselves from their enemy. Their biggest enemies are people. They are also good climbers. They can climb trees, rocks, and walls. I don’t know why, but they climb into people’s houses and steal things made of metal.
They are very big, so they grow up to be 13 centimeters to 40 centimeters. They weight 4 kilograms to 7 kilograms. So sometimes people get scared and run away. But they never hurt people if people don’t hurt them first. Most coconut crabs can live well until they’re 60 years old. They live longer than other crabs and shrimp. Sadly, people catch them very often and very many of them. So coconut crabs are disappearing because of people.
They have ten legs total, eight for walking and two legs are for grabbing and breaking things. The last four legs are very small. They have a very strong power so they can break human bones easily with their claws. They have very strong shells too. Because of that, birds can’t eat them easily. On the other hand, sometimes coconut crabs climb the trees at night and hunt birds.
Also, when they are babies, they live in the ocean. But when they become adults, they live on land. Even though they lived on the water once, they can’t swim when they become adults. So the hardest thing in their life is laying eggs in the water.
And this is the most shocking thing- coconut crabs have the same ancestor as cockroaches! I was very surprised when I knew this information. Shrimps, crabs, and lobsters too! I thought I couldn’t eat them for a while.
The coconut crab is a very special animal in the world. But people catch them too often and many of them. If we want to live with them, we should stop catching them and protect them. There are many animals already disappearing from Earth. From now on, we have to save animals that can be gone from this world.