Over at the beach at the Cape May Point State Park, I continued to watch the Ghost crabs and wondered a number of things:
1. I noticed their tracks going well beyond the tide line and up to the dunes. Why are they wandering so far from their home?
2. Do they ever loose their way and can't find their home again? If not, do they simply build another one?
3. What are the different uses for their claws - I observed them being used: to defend themselves, to pat down the sand they excavated, to dig the hole and to excavate. Do they use them to attract a mate?
4. Why are they defending their hole - do they steal homes from one another?
5. What is inside their home? Do they have different rooms? Do they indeed have different entrances? If so, why?
6. How do the old and young interact? I saw the same sized crabs fighting but not big versus small. Are the smaller ones just younger or are they the females?
7. How long will they stay in the same home during the warmer months?
This site summarizes some interesting facts and provides recent research conducted about Ghost Crabs, if you are interested: http://animaldiversity.ummz.umich.edu/accounts/Ocypode_quadrata/.
Happy Ghost Crab Watching!