Coconut Crab

It's  Thursday  evening and I was sitting here thinking of my daughters conversation with me about a "crab"  that was behind her trash can.  At the time of her first story, a few months ago,  I just listened to her telling me about a crab that scared her.  Knowing my daughter as I do.. I  pretty much 'blew it off as no big deal'...( so she saw a crab, how bad could that be?)

My youngest child is now 27 with three little boys of her own, and since being a toddler she has always been afraid of bugs, especially spiders and was one of those kids who would 'squeel very loud and run from everything'. Gina still did the same "squeel" in high school when scared of anything and I would always laugh as she ran from what ever "It" was!
Well, last night we were on the phone and she told me of the "Coconut Crabs" again... "how large they are".   I've seen many different types of "Crabs" and again did not think too much about the crab story.. Until she sent me a photo of one......
"This is no ordinary crab".

Gina said "When she first saw this, she saw the birth of her children flash before her eyes"!

All I could do was "Gasp" for air!  She said, " she took out the trash, all she did was open the lid to put the bag in and she heard a  Shhhiiisssshhhh-ing  sound".   Like something was telling her to go away!    She backed up and ran inside, turned on the outside light and there was this 'Thing" walking toward  her!"  (They are not afraid of humans and will come after you)
She "Screamed" and ran back inside to  get her husband, who laughed at her, as usual.  Like I said, "Gina screams at all bugs".......

"Honey, this is "NO BUG"

google images

Gina and her family have been living in "Guam" for about a year now, and she has been telling me about "How different the Critters" are there...  She said, "Mom they have no birds". 
The "Tree Snakes" eat them all.  And they have "Wild Boar or Pigs" that walk the streets, and also "Little Goats" that walk in packs, along with "Wild Dogs" that roam along with the "Big Cows",.. "with horns".   (Gina is so happy she lives on a Military Base with a fence all around her neighborhood!)

I went into "google images" to see for myself what these creatures were about, and I really don't want to offend anyone but I had to share this next photo... This person was nuts to let this thing on his body, but Gina said, "They are harmless"... Their like "Road Kill" and are everywhere on the Island.  

"These monsters of the Indian and Pacific ocean islands have spurned the shells of their lesser cousins in favor of being able to roam and climb and kill at will.
They get up to 4 kg in weight, have enormous leg spans, live for 30 - 60 years, and are capable of splitting coconuts with their pincher."
"ew ew ew"

google images

look how he is breaking open the coconut for lunch, google images

I've posted a map of the areas where you can find "Coconut Crabs"  they are so ugly but then they say "Beauty is in the eyes of the beholder"
"Coconut Crabs" are known to come out 'when it rains" and scrounge for food, but their favorite food is "coconuts" and you will find them climbing the Palm trees and knocking down the coconuts for a meal.

 The entire blue area  is where the "Crabs" can be found. "Guam" is above and to the right side of  Australia.


From what Gina tells me, the local people eat these crabs. Since the crabs eat coconuts they have a mild coconut flavor... They cook the meat in coconut milk and toss it over veggies....
Gina said, "She has been offered a meal made from the "Crabs" but just can't bring herself to eat them.

I have this "silly grin" on my face when I think of "Gina" running from these "Bugs"
It takes me back to when she was little.

"Oh the memories we keep of our children"


Anita @ GoingALittleCoastal said...

I would be screaming too!! Those are huge. I have never seen them that size before. It looks like something out of a bad horror movie!

Yvonne @ StoneGable said...

What an interesting crustation! WOW! YOur daughter should be afraid!
Great and informative post!
It was so fun to learn about a creature for the first time.

Kristin @ My Uncommon Slice of Suburbia said...

Wow, I have no words, I would have ran so fast....uggg
Take care

Lourie said...

I would be running....all.the.way.home! They also have flying cockroaches. Has she encountered those. As if those monster crabs aren't enough! We were lucky and never had to go to Guam. Although, we did almost go to Alaska when he made Chief.

the cape on the corner said...

you have GOT to be kidding! this is insane! i showed my boyfriend, b/c he thought this could not be real. He still didn't believe me, and looked it up himself online. he is now satisfied, lol. crazy!

Janice said...

I enjoyed this post. This was totally new to me. I love learning new stuff. And Yeah...those cute little things our kids did when they were little are only made more cute as they grow older.

Granny J said...

Oh My Gosh!!!! I'd have peed my pants for sure if that thing had shushed me in the dark. I'm not afraid of bugs but that would have gotten my attention. I about dropped my cup of coffee when I read that there are no birds because the tree snakes eat them all!.

Theresa said...

Good GRIEF!!! It's HUGE!!! I've never heard of coconut crabs. Great photos and very interesting read.

Sadie said...

omg!! those crabs are unreal!! horrible! no offense but the picture of the guy 'posing' with the crab.. ewww made my skin crawl!!!! lol you're one interesting person to have gathered soooo much info on thos ugly beasties!!

Molly @ Star Cottage said...

That is one of the scariest things I've ever seen. I think I would have died on the spot.

Arti said...

I can imagine what your daughter would have went through... I am also so sacred of these creatures... And this one is huge and thank goodness it is not found in India! Have a nice day:)

Anonymous said...

This CRAB would totally freak me out too! I'd think it had gotten into some 'green' water or something!

Anonymous said...

us military men here on guam like to lasso us up a good ol coco nut crab and ride it around while it bucks wildly... no but seriously we do...

Derek Damian said...

The picture of the guy with the crab on his is not really what it seems. The crab is latched onto a string or stick that the guy is holding up for the picture. They don't really ever get that huge on Guam and you have to go out looking for them to actually find them. If you run into one you should count yourself lucky, grab a cooler, throw it over it and call the nearest islander to cook it haha. They are harmless unless provoked and they really are tasty.

The cows with horns are water buffalo that never get as big as the ones in Asia. The wild boar is a rare sight (so is the snake) and they do have birds on Guam... take a trip to my back yard I promise they do.

The US military guy on Guam above is teasing haha although a coconut crab (AYUYU is what we call em) that big would feed an entire village during fiesta time haha.

I encourage all of you not to believe everything you see or read online because I promise its not like that on Guam. There isnt enough land mass for a crab to live 30 - 60 years without being caught or sighted or killed by some freak coconut rain shower! Have a wonderful day!

Anonymous said...

Yeah, and half those animals, including the brown tree snake killing all the birds, were INTRODUCED by humans; In fact the only one not introduced is the coconut crab, and its going extinct on many islands