1 Tahrcountry Musings: Yeti crab farms its own food

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Yeti crab farms its own food

Scientists have recently found a species of crab that cultivates bacteria on its claws, and then eats them. The discovery was made by DR Andrew Thurber, a marine ecologist at Oregon State University in Corvallis. Dr Thurber has named the crab Kiwa puravida, after a common Costa Rican saying that means 'pure life'.

Dr Thurber says K. puravida waves its claws to actively farm its bacterial gardens. They stir up the water around the bacteria, ensuring that fresh supplies of oxygen and sulphide wash over them and helping them to grow. The bacteria are the crab’s main food source. 

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