This Disgusting New Crab Species Eats Food Grown On Its Own Arms

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This is one of the weirdest animals I've ever seen: a furry white crab that only eats the bacteria growing on its claws and arms. It looks like a disgusting Christmas ornament if disgusting Christmas ornaments ate their own bristles.

This large yeti crab species, identified by marine ecologist Andrew Thurber, allows a symbiotic bacteria to grow on the bristles all over its body, coating them. The albino furry crab grows the bacteria—which is fed itself by methane and hydrogen sulphide gas—only to harvest it with the combs that are part of its mouth.

The species has been named Kiwa puravida (which means pure life) and it was discovered six hours from Costa Rica's coast in methane sheep, deep down on the ocean floor.


I wish I could eat stuff growing off my hands, but they would look weird with pork chops attached to them. Almost as weird as this thing, actually. [Nature via Discover Magazine]