Are you looking for a fun new activity to teach your children this summer? If you're not a regular beachcomber, you may never have heard of the sand crab. Sand crabs are shy yet tricky little creatures who feed in the wet sand left behind by breaking waves. Try a few simple techniques so you and your kids can catch your very own.
- Sandy beach
- Your hands
Dig quickly; sand crabs are fast.
Your first tactical move for apprehending a sand crab is your position. Sand crabs are speedy little guys, so you'll need to act quickly. Stand in the surf and wait for a wave to break and recede. As soon as the sand is exposed, start looking for tiny bubbles in the sand. This will be your target area.
Now it's time to dig. When some of the sand is pulled back from the waves, the sand crab will immediately start to bury itself deeper. This is what causes the bubbles in the sand. Your goal is to nab one before it gets too deep. Start by digging at the site of the bubbles. Take a hand full of the dug-up sand and begin to sift through it. You'll know if you've been successful when you feel a little vibration in your hand. If you haven't caught one this time, wait for another wave to break and try again.
Continue to brush away the excess sand to reveal your catch. The successful sand crab hunter will now be holding one or more of these little wonders. Sand crabs are often used for bait, and since they have the most sensory neurons of any animal, they are often used in neurological testing. If you're not planning on doing any fishing and don't have any lab tests scheduled, it's only fair you return your catch to his home. Wait again for a wave to break and dig a hole in the wet sand. Place your crab back in the hole and wish him luck.