Hermit Crab in a Glass Shell

i-37ab72936cd86e397d02ff18a0b0cf66-hermit crab in a glass shell.jpg
A FEMA home for a New Orleans crab? “George Bush doesn’t care about hermit crabs.”

This photo is begging for a back story. We propose a competition: Who can write the best description of what you see here? We will give out awards for most creative, heartwarming and disturbing in a couple of days.

Thanks to Tyler Lang for sending along. As he put it, “it seems pretty self-explanatory.”


  1. #1 Sven DiMilo
    January 30, 2008

    Very cool.
    Anybody else remember a book titled Pagoo?

  2. #2 Evan
    January 30, 2008

    Ralph hefted the small stone in his claw. It felt solid; real; tangible: quite unlike the meaningless platitudes Benny the Blenny had been feeding him moments before. What were they? “Look before you leap.” Right. Like a crab could leap. “An apple a day keeps the doctor away.” An apple? Ralph had never heard of such a thing.

    As he focused on the back of Benny’s annoying, self-important skull and cocked back his claw, he searched his tiny ganglion for the last thing. What was it? Something about glass houses?

    Whatever. Ralph unleashed the stone with all his strength and watched as it flew towards the unsuspecting fish.

  3. #3 Kristin
    January 30, 2008

    “I’m so sick of this bull…” Jerome’s thoughts sizzled in his mind as he drove his claw into his arm.
    “ALL I WANT IS FOR YOU TO LEAVE ME ALONE!” He yelled, inciting the silent passerbies to turn and stare. Then they all turned back and went on their way.

    Why won’t they acknowledge me? he thought, and dug deeper. They’ll notice one day, when I’ve receded even further.

    All I want is for them to notice me. All I want is to not be alone.

    And he receded into his shell. He curled up in his shell that he chose solely for its transparency.


    [AN: Goths are annoying, but they make for interesting psychological analysis.]

  4. #4 synapse
    January 30, 2008

    Is it related to the artist who is making these?

  5. #5 kevin z
    January 30, 2008

    thats awesome, I posted on a similar housing project for hermit crabs last year here: Invert PSA: Help the Homeless (Hermit Crabs That Is)

  6. #7 milkshake
    January 30, 2008

    The Hermit Crab in The Glass Shell was transmitting its long-overdue report: “We found Jesus. We probed him. All UFOs now returning to the mother ship”

  7. #8 Casey Smith
    January 31, 2008

    Considered one of the most laborious of exotic cuisines, these soft-shelled Hermit Crabs are grown in these glass shells which they are also served. The patron is presented with the glass shell upside-down, a selection of sliced fresh vegetables, and steaming hot broth. The Patron pours the broth on themselves and construct their own soft-boiled hermit crab soup.

  8. #9 nurblvr
    January 31, 2008

    “trapped in my glasshouse
    crowd has been gathering since dawn
    make a pot of coffee
    while catastrophe awaits me out on the lawn
    think i’m going to stay in today
    pretend like i don’t know what’s going on” – Ani Difranco “Glass House”

  9. #10 Drekab
    January 31, 2008

    Oh, my God, they found me, I don’t know how, but they found me. Run for it Marty!

  10. #11 Cat of many faces
    January 31, 2008

    How’s this for an explanation:

    “Scientists discover first known attempt at hermit crab lingerie.”


  11. #12 Will
    January 31, 2008

    “Well, Bob, it’s the first time we’ve had a claustrophobic Paguroid in for consultation, but I think we’ve come up with something that will sort you right out…”

  12. #13 Jenbug
    January 31, 2008

    My God!

    First it was doggie sweaters, then doggie playdates, then designer doggie clothing, then HEADPHONES for your doggie, then wigs for your cats, then lolcat-builder for your cats, then dressing your pet rats, then disapproving rabbits.

    This ‘keeping up with the Jones’ pet’ thing has GOT to STOP!

  13. #14 Tyler
    January 31, 2008

    David Blaine’s side act.

  14. #15 Zelly
    January 31, 2008

    Cover picture for the new epic novel “Glass House”, which combines the works of “A Doll’s House”, “The Glass Menagerie”, and “Moby Dick”. It is the break wrenching story of a crab caught in the tides of fate, seeking the far shores and his destiny.

  15. #16 Pat King
    January 31, 2008

    Does this shell make me look fat?

  16. #17 mr_subjunctive
    January 31, 2008

    #1: Nudism: ur doin it rong.


  17. #18 milkshake
    February 1, 2008

    sorry changing the topic – but have you seen this?:


    It is pretty big (a feet long), colorfull and absurdly snouty. It likes to jump around on the spindly legs. And it was co-discovered by a zooligistt named Rathbun

  18. #19 Dave Briggs
    February 1, 2008

    I don’t know what he is doing in there but someone should remind him that crabs that live in glass houses shouldn’t throw stones! LOL!
    Dave Briggs :~)

  19. #20 freds
    February 4, 2008

    There was once a hermit crab named Benny who had a habit of stealing things and then putting them in hidden places. One day, he found this beautiful glass shell. Since it was so lovely, he decided that he would wear it insted of hiding it. Everybody admired his wonderful glass shell. A few weeks later he and a few friends were in King Neptune’s throne room when nobody was around. Benny, true to his habits, decided to take Neptune’s throne and hide it in Dave Jone’s Locker. His friends helped him but the throne was very heavy. Eventually, they got to Davey Jone’s locker and were about to hide the throne. But the throne got away from Benny and his friends. It fell right on Benny and broke his beautiful glass shell. Benny didn’t have time to be sad because he heard King Neptune coming and he sounded mad. When King neptume found Benny and saw his broken shell, he roared, “Benny, hermits that live in glass houses shouldn’t stow thrones.”

  20. #21 Teisha
    February 4, 2008

    In the Southeastern Pacific, a few small, hilly islands are the exclusive breeding grounds for the rare Bellus Glassus, commonly known as the “Glass snail.” This ornate snail creates a shell made entirely of sand, held together by an adhesive substance it secretes from its porous skin. Once a year during early Spring, when local storms are their fiercest, the Glass snails leave the waters surrounding these islands, their homes throughout the rest of the year, and come out onto the beaches to breed. After laying their eggs in the moist shores, the snails continue their land-bound journey until they reach the summit of the hilly islands. There they wait. Much like lemmings, these creatures have an inexplicable propensity towards death; the snails wait until lightning strikes the peak and, consequently, have their sandy shells turn into glass. The hermit crabs native to these islands scavenge these glass shells. Above is a picture of one such fortunate hermit crab.

  21. #22 Erikat
    February 8, 2008

    Goddamnit – even female hermit crabs have to deal with a glass ceiling…

  22. #23 Judith in Ottawa
    March 4, 2008

    I know I’m late, I just fell over this, but can’t resist:

    “Someday my prince will come”

  23. #24 Garrett
    July 8, 2008


  24. #25 Rachel
    August 19, 2008

    As Susie the Seagull is chasing Henry the Hermit Crab, all Henry could do was hide. “Ha Ha,” Susie screeches, “you can’t hide!” “Oh, Drat,” Henry thinks, “I forgot what Grandma Helen gave me for Hermukkah last year. A glass shell. I should have traded it in for some hermit crab nibble.”

  25. #26 danielle
    October 8, 2008

    omg that is wild

  26. #27 kate
    November 7, 2008

    weirdest thing i;v ever seen!!!!!!!

  27. #28 Braden
    December 6, 2008

    I was woundering were you can get this glass see through shell and how much it would be.

  28. #29 Catina
    December 17, 2008

    I to am in ownder of where to get this glass shell as my children would love to be able to see there hermmies bodies all the time and think it is cool. However, i do have to say that you people are amazingly funny…Good times..

  29. #30 George Meredith
    January 5, 2009

    It should be plain for all to sea
    The hermit in transparency
    His home still carried on his back
    but now great “in” sight
    We do not lack

    January 5, 2009

    That’s neat, but I’m not sure how much our friend the hermit crab likes it.

  31. #32 Jackelyn Frost
    January 11, 2009

    Yikes, I’d better beat this compulsion to throw stones!

  32. #33 ann
    January 14, 2009

    um……. where do you get thoose COOL!!!!! shells
    there like sooooooooooo cool

  33. #34 Katie
    February 13, 2009

    I was wondering if there is a way that you can pay for these shells or is this the only one you have do you know anything I sell crabs so I would like to know if I could buy some. Thanks!

  34. #35 chat
    February 13, 2009

    very good sites

  35. #36 cet
    March 26, 2009

    thanks. by Brooklyn

  36. #37 chris salamida
    March 28, 2009

    Just like his father before him, he hated the confines of a life unexamined. He prefered being exposed to everything life had to offer. He didn’t realize however, that there are just somethings his bretheren were not meant to see. As for the rest of us….We may never see offspring from his Hermit Crab linage again!

  37. #38 Ang
    April 3, 2009

    I do not throw stones…i think every one can learn a lesson from me

  38. #39 Dillon
    April 3, 2009

    where do you find glass shells.

  39. #40 neon
    April 27, 2009

    Then wigs for your cats, then lolcat-builder for your cats, then dressing your pet rats, then disapproving rabbits.

  40. #41 dana
    May 5, 2009

    glass shells should be sold in stores,that would be awesome.lol 1 of my native land hermit crabs opened the cage and escaped,i havent seen it since.my other one just about came out of its shell on my hand when i got it wet and it wasnt even molting,for a second i thought the hot water might of burnt it ,im scared , but its still up and around, i need a vet,FAST,plez.

  41. #42 dana
    May 5, 2009

    dana again,if u put a water sponge in my hermit crab,nemo,he’ll spin the sponge around by him self in his claws……i had to go get him he started to run away,LOL.

  42. #43 kelly
    May 25, 2009

    …oh f**k, no more throwing stones I guess.

  43. #44 Sebastian the Hermit Crab
    May 26, 2009

    The tide rises, sun is setting. Temperature is dropping well boys it looks like another night of dragging our heavy asses on the sand smelling and sniffing around for food. The little ones always get it hard getting run over by the big dogs.

    Suddenly a pelican flies over and you hear a crack in the rocks. Sebastian stars pushing the sand in front of him as fast as he can to go out and get a clear view from the little holes on the rocks. It was Bubba… he was lying there flat on the rocks, his eyes were.. well the same, his big claw torn his white soggy ass was out of his shell… Wait a minute… Bubba! where the hell is your shell?

    Bubba makes a last effort and asks Sebastian to come…
    What is it Bubba? – In a whispering forced voice Bubba says, remember when i used to tell you I would make it to the new world… Well I did… Turns out i ran into a glass blower… The bitch thought it was a innovative move to make me a glass shell.. He said, there you go little hermit no more having to wait on instinct till your close predators leave. Now you can sit comfortably in your shell and just watch them all run past you. I nodded and accepted the new shell. He had trained a pelican to fly around the world so after being promised his share of the days catch, the pelican agreed to fly me over until i found my home. It wasn’t so hard to find it after all the smell is the same the radioactive fabric next to our house is easy to track. Just one problem, the bitch didn’t tell me it wasnt shock proof. So I jumped out of the pelicans beak instead of gripping his sack like i was supposed to. I though this bitch came with a parachute. After all, those dudes that fall from the sky with a pretty shell all the time have glasses on their shell… I thought …. and Bubba died…

  44. #45 dans
    June 17, 2009

    yes Thank you for sharing ideas on a different number

  45. #46 elizabeth
    June 30, 2009

    where did u find that shell i have been looking for one i have several herit crabs i think thats so cool

  46. #47 Jo Barber
    July 21, 2009

    It’s lighter they said and almost indestructable. Made just for you. It will make you more attractive and certainly more successful. Heck it might even set you free. He’d spent a small fortune on it. No more second hand shells for him anymore. This shell was the top of the line. He felt obligated to put it on having spent sooo much on it. But an odd feeling kept creeping up on him. As much as his ego was soothed, he felt way too exposed. He wasn’t the only one wearing this “new shell.” Some strange thought slipped into his mind as easily as he had slipped into this shell. He felt like he was being watched. Not by the other crabs, they just wish they had it in them to wear the latest in high crab fashion. Somone was watching him and smiling, waiting and hungry, with a rock. Just a simple little, nature made rock. Suddenly, he just wanted his old, hardy and reliable shells. But he had spent sooo much…

  47. #48 Tristan McNish
    August 6, 2009

    This is really cool. Tristan (6 yrs.)

  48. #50 Brandy
    August 18, 2009

    What i see here is a Pis from a book that i have in my room

  49. #51 Chloe
    August 24, 2009

    Well here’s something new for you guys who has an eye for extra tricked out pads. This is an exclusively mobile exotic luxury (EMEL)!
    Thirty percent of hermit crabs on our shorelines today live in to small shells. In the spring during growth session, sea liners such as hermit crabs molt leaving about a half percent more hermit crabs homeless or causes them to adopt uncafishant domains.
    So we want you to adopt this homeless animal and every on you adopt will have its very own new comfortable energy efficient glass home

  50. #52 emma
    September 13, 2009

    omg this is so cool and btw, i have a hermit crab and it is getting too big for its shell does anybocy know where i can find a new painted shell that is not glass.

  51. #53 emma
    September 13, 2009

    sorry i accedentaly misspelled the word anybody above. and also,if anybody has a hermit crab they dont want please tell me. you can just type something. i will be looking at this probally every day.

  52. #54 Danny Lowell Thompson
    March 13, 2010

    Ha! They said no shoes, no shirt, no service. This will show them.

  53. #55 bella
    April 5, 2010

    Wow it felt hard but some liquid combination it felt strange but flexible but then I payed attention to the crab she/he was so amazing with huge red claws and a swirly body with a pink back with wite spots it looked cool expecially with a glass shell have you no everybody else has a painted shell I mean it is really cool where do you get a shell like that because im gettin one in july for my birthday and id love to have a shell like that for mine (tip i had one before: dont touch crab when moving to diffrent shell it can die!)

  54. #56 sue riggan
    April 22, 2010

    I would like to buy some glass hermit crab shells were can I get some?

  55. #57 bolum izle
    October 27, 2010

    I was wondering if there is a way that you can pay for these shells or is this the only one you have do you know anything I sell crabs so I would like to know if I could buy some. Thanks!

  56. #58 dave
    October 29, 2010

    Privacy isn’t a crime.

  57. #59 Daniel Eastwood
    December 24, 2010

    This crab does not through stones.

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