Crab Art

Everyone who goes to the beach will have seen the small balls laid out on the sand. I find them a wonderful expression of nature. None are the same although some are more elaborate than others. When we went for a walk along Emerald Beach on the Mid-north Coast of NSW, with all the other people who take advantage of a leash free area on the beach where the dogs can run free, I noticed that the small balls on the beach didn’t have any footprints in them. Perhaps there is a bit of respect for the creators of what I like to call Crab Art.

First of all have a close look at the sand balls. They do look rather random don’t they?

blog_beach-art_crab-sand-balls

They are a seemingly bunch of sand balls scattered on the beach

crab art05_named_emerald beach_march 2017

But some have a shape and form

crab art04_named_emerald beach_march 2017

Can you see the little roads?

crab art03_named_emerald beach_march 2017

This one has a certain cartoon effect I feel. Can you see the face?

crab art06_named_emerald beach_march 2017

This is one of my favourites. Almost a butterfly?

crab art01_named_emerald beach_march 2017

From another angle you can see the little hole where the crabs “home” is.

crab art02_named_emerald beach_march 2017

You really should meet one of the Crab Artists. They are about the size of a finger tip. What fabulous blue eyes.

crab artist_named_emerald beach_march 2017

Do you think the crabs create art on the beach?

8 thoughts on “Crab Art

  1. Great art! Your photos are so interesting that I have to post a question:
    Do you know a scientific explanation why the crabs do this?
    Thank you!
    Evita

    Liked by 1 person

      1. Oh, really?
        Well, sometimes beauty is not enough, and it emerges that I’m a nature scientist. So in this case it really tickles my scientific interest. Maybe you can give me 1 hint before I travel the internet to find out the answer: Do you know the name of the crab?

        Liked by 1 person

      2. I think that was Kevin 😀
        Could be a Sand Crab or perhaps Ocypodinae The sand balls are from their deep burrows in the intertidal zone. Good luck with your research Evita

        Like

      3. Hi bushboy, I found many articles about the crabs, here are some:
        http://www.treehugger.com/natural-sciences/meet-little-crab-unintentionally-makes-awesome-sand-art.html
        http://thekidshouldseethis.com/post/9718206527 (great video)
        http://www.amusingplanet.com/2015/12/natures-sand-artist-sand-bubbler-crab.html:
        “After they have scrapped the sand grains clean, they roll them into little balls and toss them behind. By doing this they avoid sifting the same sand twice.”
        Nature is a great inventor and artist….
        Thank you for introducing me to the Sand Bubbler Crabs! 🙂
        Evita

        Liked by 1 person

  2. Your favourite is mine too . . .I see a Maple leaf though! They are such amazing creatures, and great name . . .never saw their art when I was in the pacific. Another reason I need to head back!

    Liked by 1 person

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