"Estuaries such as Long Island Sound are among the most valuable ecosystems in the world. The Sound supports diverse marine life, including most of the fish and shellfish we value as food ..."

– Connecticut Sea Grant

Conservation & Research

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Long Island Sound Fun Fact

Long Island Sound is 113 miles long, 21 miles wide (at its widest) and holds about 18 trillion gallons of water. Its average depth is 63 feet – which is just a little deeper than the height of our IMAX screen! Can you fathom that?!

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Common Name:  Flatclaw hermit Crab

Latin Name:  Pagurus pollicaris and p. longicarpus

Size/weight:  About 1⁄2 inch long & wide for P. longicarpus, one inch or more for P. pollicaris

Range: Gulf of Maine to Gulf of Mexico

Habitat:  Sandy and other bottom habitats in depths up to 150 feet.

Diet:  Food (detritus and algae) scavenged off the bottom and within the sand and mud.

Description:  The hermit crab is famous for borrowing the shells or snails or other animals as their own home.  Inside the shell, their hermit crab’s body is long, soft and roughly cylindrical with small appendages, antennae and prominent eye stalks.

Conservation Note:  Not listed as endangered or vulnerable.

See them in the Salt Marsh gallery and in the Touch Tank »