- any of numerous crabs, especially of the genera Pagurus and Eupagurus, that protect their soft uncovered abdomen by occupying the castoff shell of a univalve mollusk.
Origin of hermit crab
First recorded in 1725–35
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018
Examples from the Web for hermit crab
On the coast also the Raven seeks to obtain possession of the Hermit-crab.The Industries of Animals
It is plain from its anatomy that the Hermit-crab was not always a Hermit-crab.
But the Hermit-crab, be it remembered, is in no real sense a parasite.
A tribe of Decapod Crustacea, of which the Hermit-crab is the type.The Ancient Life History of the Earth
Henry Alleyne Nicholson
We soon discovered crab-claws projecting from its shell, and recognized it as a hermit-crab, an original freebooter.Petals Plucked from Sunny Climes
- any small soft-bodied decapod crustacean of the genus Pagurus and related genera, living in and carrying about the empty shells of whelks or similar molluscs
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012