Mr.Crabbies’ Coral Cousin
Mr.Crabbies’ bright cousin the red coral crab (Trapezia cymodoce) is usually hard to spot and photograph. Trapezia sp. like to hide themselves in between branches of Pocillopora sp. corals. These corals are normally darker in colour, but while they are recovering from the bleaching event the coral they are white and this makes Mr.Crabbies’ coral cousin stand out like a sore crab!
These coral crabs and their Pocillopora sp. houses have a mutual symbiosis. The coral crabs feed on the mucus secreted by the corals with their tiny feet (yuck) and use their sharp pincers to nip at the tube feet of the deadly Crown-of-Thorns sea star. If you’ve ever had your toes nipped by a grumpy crab you will know this can be quite painful, it would definitely put us off eating this coral!
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