Can Crabs and Snails Live Together?

Can crabs live with snails?

We all know that one of the most important things to consider when buying a pet is their suitable tank mates. Nobody wants to see his/her being alone or in isolation. In this article, we are going to know if snails and crabs ( hermit crabs) could get along with each other. It’s a fact that hermit crabs use other animal shells such as snail’s shell to protect themselves against predators. So the question is, can they be suitable tank mates with snails? We shall find out soon.

Can crabs and snails live together? Yes, hermit crabs and snails can stay in almost the same temperature and water parameters without one trying to harm the other.

If you’re looking for suitable tank mates for your hermit Crabs, then you should look at different species of aquarium snails and choose the type you want to share a tank with your hermit crabs.

Hermit crabs are freshwater dwellers, so are many snails, and both hardly have issues once they’re all satisfied with what ever they need.

You might be surprised and will be wondering how hermit crabs could be able to coexist with snails despite the fact that they always occupy snail’s shell.

We shall discuss about that in this article.

Can Crabs kill snails?

Although hermit crabs and other species of crab can get along with snails of all type, for the fact that they all could stay in the same habitat and be comfortable. In the wild, they all get along very well, so will they do in captivity. But if hermit crabs uses snail’s shell for it’s protection, does it mean they will kill the snail in order to possess the shell?

Can crabs kill snails? Yes, they will kill snails to take over their shells if there is lack of shells and foods.

The fact is, crabs, especially hermit crabs kill snails out of desperation.

Related: Can Crabs and Frogs be kept together?

What am trying to explain is, if everything is in abundance, crabs won’t have the time to harass snails nor take over their shells.

Contrary to popular opinion, hermit crabs don’t normally kill snails and take over their body.

The truth is, they can smell or detect dying snails, and might kill them or wait till they die, and then take over their shells.

Related: Can African dwarf frogs be kept with Shrimps?

Although crabs could kill snails out of desperation, but they’re good tank mates if everybody is satisfied.

For instance, hermit crabs naturally require empty and disinfected shells to occupy, so providing them with enough of it would satisfy that particular need, so they won’t have to stress themselves going after life snails in order to kill them and take their shells.

No, they don’t have that time, unless they don’t have other options.

Related: Can Turtles be kept with Frogs?

Again once your crabs are okay with food, they won’t have to stress themselves by going after snails to kill and eat, maybe unless the snail dies.

The fact is, almost all species of crustacean easily get stressed and don’t like it, especially crabs, so they won’t bother your snails if they have enough food to eat, unless they’re desperate and have no other option.

So crabs and snails can live together, but they can kill snails if they need to.

Do Small Crabs Eat Snails?

If crabs could kill snails, can small crab do the same too? Maybe you’re not so optimistic about keeping your snails with crabs, hearing that they could kill them if they need to, so you may want to know if small crabs could kill them too.

Do Small crabs eat snails? Yes, crabs will kill and eat snails to take over their shell if they need to, no matter the size of the crab.

Crabs of all sizes could kill any size of snail if they need to, so if you’re thinking of getting smaller crabs for your snails as suitable tank mates, then you still need to provide the necessary things to them to be satisfied because there is no difference between the big and small crabs when it comes to killing their preys for what they need.

Related: Can African dwarf frogs live with Angelfish?

Despite all odds, snails and crabs are very compatible to keep in a tank without any of them bothering the other.

That’s if their needs are provided.

Related: Can African dwarf frogs coexist with Rainbow Sharks?


Snails are one of the suitable tank mates for crabs, despite all odds.

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