Crabs are cute little crustaceans. They feed primarily on algae, and you can often see them walking sideways, like walking through a crowded bar. But interestingly, that’s not the only way they walk. Although you may not see it often, crabs can also walk forward and sideways.
The problem is, walking sideways is the crab’s most comfortable and fastest mode of movement. This is because they have stiff jointed legs and cannot move flexibly. Walking sideways is more efficient for them.
In this video, you can see a crab walking sideways, doing what it’s supposed to do – but there’s quite a bit of top predator on the right. a lion.
A woman can be heard behind the camera saying: “Brave little crab.”
The crab continued to sideways away from the lying lion, watching it intently. The lion stood up and approached it, and the crab instinctively made a defensive posture. It turned to face the lion, with its front paws raised high.
It’s raising its fist, so to speak.
With this view of a crab next to a lion, you can see how small it is compared to this predator. It’s a lot like spiders are to cats — if you own a cat, chances are you’ve seen a similar encounter. The big cat was curious and approached the crab without threatening. Crabs, however, cannot distinguish between curious and predatory behaviors.
While the lion walks forward, the boldest crab keeps its paws in defensive mode and walks backwards, using its remaining stiff legs, making sure they don’t get in the way of its balance on the sand.
Calm and curious, the lion spread its paws again and lay down in front of the crab. The crab backed away, claws still up, and turned away from the lion. Unfortunately for the Crab, the Lion is part of an equally curious pride.
The video goes on to document the crab’s escape from the lion. Lions amused by the small crustacean may not realize they are scaring it away.
It was a pride of young lions that stalked the crab closely, approaching it with dangerous claws but never making contact. A curious or mischievous claw can destroy a crab, but they’re only watching from a distance—a distance no one feels comfortable with, though.
At the end of the video, you see the five lions part ways with the crab as it finds some tall grass to hide in.
Up next, more lion encounters!
Watch Lions Jump Ridiculously High and Prove Thin Fences Can Be Worthless
The little turtle bullies the big lion in the puddle
I am broadly interested in how human activities influence the ability of wildlife to persist in the modified environments that we create.
Specifically, my research investigates how the configuration and composition of landscapes influence the movement and population dynamics of forest birds. Both natural and human-derived fragmenting of habitat can influence where birds settle, how they access the resources they need to survive and reproduce, and these factors in turn affect population demographics. Most recently, I have been studying the ability of individuals to move through and utilize forested areas which have been modified through timber harvest as they seek out resources for the breeding and postfledging phases. As well I am working in collaboration with Parks Canada scientists to examine in the influence of high density moose populations on forest bird communities in Gros Morne National Park. Many of my projects are conducted in collaboration or consultation with representatives of industry and government agencies, seeking to improve the management and sustainability of natural resource extraction.
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