Pagurus anachoretus is a hermit crab belonging to the Paguridae family, which mainly inhabits the Mediterranean Sea, although it is also present in the Atlantic Ocean waters of Spain and Portugal. It lives on rocky bottoms or in Posidonia oceanica meadows in coastal waters up to 100 meters deep, although between 6 and 10 meters is where they are most frequently observed.
This species reaches 4 cm in size, being the body brown with bluish-white longitudinal lines that are present both on the body and on the legs, claws and antennae. The body of Pagurus anachoretus is covered with long, fine, white hairs, which are widely spaced. The clamps are slender, with the left clamp being much more developed than the right. Even so, the size of the claws is moderate. From the face we highlight the eye peduncles, which are white, and in which we find at the top its blue-green eyes that will certainly attract much attention. It has a pair of long antennae also with a banded pattern between chestnut brown with relatively thin bands of bluish-whitish color. The abdomen of this species, as with all hermit crabs, is soft and is protected by inserting it into shells that will occasionally change as they outgrow.
Pagurus anachoretus is a solitary species, and although it is not common to find it in symbiosis with anemones, there are a few documented cases in which it presents symbiosis with Calliactin parasitic anemones or anemones of the genus Sagartia.
The diet of Pagurus anachoretus is very varied, being a scavenger species it will not miss any opportunity that presents itself, whether it is decomposing organic remains or even algae.
During the months of May to October is the breeding season for this species of hermit crab. At this time, we can observe the females carrying in their bellies numerous eggs that have been previously fertilized by the males.Photos: