Indian Ocean, South Africa

The ghost crab has a red, orange, and pink hue on its shell. It is sitting on the sand, which has a brown-red color. Behind this fiesta little guy, is the foamy remnants of a receding wave.

copyright Anette Mossbacher, 10 September, 2020

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This photograph was captured with a Canon EOS-1D Mark III and a lens. The following settings were used:

  • Aperture: ƒ/7.1
  • Exposure time: 1/400s
  • ISO: 400
  • Focal Length: 400mm

The original photograph has the following dimensions: 3349 by 2233 pixels (WxH).

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The ghost crab has a red, orange, and pink hue on its shell. It is sitting on the sand that also has a brown-red color. Behind this fiesta little guy, is the foamy remnants of a receding crashed wave. The wave creates a diagonal line across the composition, leading to a more exciting photograph. Their habitat is seashores. You will find them in the early mornings at sunrise and at sunset time.

The Atlantic ghost crab has a square-shaped shell, also known as a carapace. It is also semi-translucent. Interestingly, they can change the color of their shells to match their surroundings. A survival technique to try and escape predators. As seen in this photograph, it has changed its’ coloring to match the sand. Another tactic they use is going into their burrows or flattening their bodies just under the surface of the sand. Undoubtedly their eyes can rotate 360 degrees, scanning their entire surroundings.

Did you know? The incredible ghost crab does not have to return to the water to wet its gills. Instead, they can use fine hairs located on the base of their legs to wick up water from damp sand. They prefer to rest on the surface of the sand and the incoming waves to wash over them. The ghost crab, Ocypode quadrata, has an average lifespan of 3 years.

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