Hermit crab spotted traveling with 'plastic shell' on Taiwan beach

The island’s hermit crabs are finding it difficult to find a home

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Ke Fa-shou (柯發壽)'s Facebook photo

Ke Fa-shou (柯發壽)'s Facebook photo

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) – Photos of a hermit crab carrying a “plastic cup” as its shell on a beach in eastern Taiwan have become an unbearable sight to behold for many concerned about the environment.

Ke Fa-shou (柯發壽), a Taiwanese photographer who lives in Chiayi, captured images of a hermit crab crawling on a beach in Taitung’s Sanxiantai (三仙台) during a visit to the picturesque scenic area earlier this month. The crab, which apparently failed to find a mollusk shell for protection, made do with a scavenged plastic cup, likely part of waste disposed of by humans.

In his Facebook post, Ke wrote, “Avarice has blinded us. Oceanic disasters serve as stark reminders of the need to protect our nature.” Ko said he had tried to locate a shell of the appropriate size for the unfortunate hermit crab but to no avail, reported the Liberty Times.

According to the report, the availability of empty shells is dwindling as a result of mollusk overharvesting for human consumption. The fact has left hermit crabs with inadequate supply of “houses” because they need to replace the old shells with new ones constantly as they grow.

The public members and restaurants are invited to donate shells to help the survival of the creature by mailing them to the address: No. 500, Sec. 1, Songjiang Rd., Taitung City. Call the Taitung Branch of the Tourism Bureau at 089-281530 for more information.

Ke Fa-shou (柯發壽)'s Facebook photo