Belangkas in Malay
My name is Karl, and I'm a horseshoe crab. I'm not really a crab, but if you at me closely I'm more related to the group of animals that belongs to insects, arachnids, and crustaceans. Looking at me reminds you of a prehistoric animal that roam the earth 544 million years ago, my cousin the Trilobites.
Interesting Facts about me
I have 2 compound eyes on the top of my shell. My eyes have an effective range of about 3 feet, which means I am near blind in most occasions unless I get close to you.
We can swim upside down in the open ocean using our legs and a flap hiding nearly 200 flattened gills to propel ourselves. So if you see me upside down, don't worry. That's just the way we swim.
Despite what we look like, we're quite harmless and we're even good for you. The medical profession uses an extract from our blue, copper-based blood to test the purity of pharmaceutical and medical devices for humans. Our shell which is made up of "chitin" is used to manufacture chitin-coated filaments for suturing and chitin coated wound dressing for burn victims. This makes healing 35 to 50 percent faster.
Where can you find me in Aquaria?
You can find me at the entrance at the DNA touch pool tank and in the Coast.
Size & Weight
I grow by "moulting" or shedding my shell. On my first year I moult several times, reaching half an inch wide. After my third or fourth year, I moult only once a year. I am now a foot long.
We are omnivorous scavengers, preferring small bivalves, molluscs, worms, dead fish and algae.
Habitat & Range
I live in the warm waters of the Indo-Pacific.