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Gecarcinus quadratus Costa Rica.jpg
Gecarcinus quadratus (halloween crab)
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Subphylum: Crustacea
Class: Malacostraca
Order: Decapoda
Infraorder: Brachyura
Superfamily: Grapsoidea
Family: Gecarcinidae
MacLeay, 1838 [1]

The Gecarcinidae, the land crabs, are a family of true crabs that are adapted for terrestrial existence. Similar to all other crabs, land crabs possess a series of gills. In addition, the part of the carapace covering the gills is inflated and equipped with blood vessels. These organs extract oxygen from the air, analogous to the vertebrate lungs. Adult land crabs are terrestrial, but visit the sea periodically, where they breed and their larvae develop. Land crabs are tropical omnivores which sometimes cause considerable damage to crops. Most land crabs have one of their claws larger than the other.

The family contains these genera:[1]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b Peter K. L. Ng, Danièle Guinot & Peter J. F. Davie (2008). "Systema Brachyurorum: Part I. An annotated checklist of extant Brachyuran crabs of the world" (PDF). Raffles Bulletin of Zoology. 17: 1–286. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2011-06-06. 
  • Encarta Reference Library Premium 2005 DVD.