BY AUSTRALIAN GEOGRAPHIC | SEPTEMBER 11, 2019
The peculiar behaviour is believed to be the first evidence of an animal using its stomach to communicate.
LIKE MOST CRABS, ghost crabs use their strong claws to fight off predators, but they have an additional defensive technique in their arsenal: they can further intimidate by growling… using the teeth in their stomachs.
Named for their sand-coloured carapaces, which allow them to move about inconspicuously, as well as their nocturnal habits, the ghost crab can be found along most Australian shorelines.
This new discovery about the crab, published today in the Royal Society B journal, is the first evidence of an animal using its stomach to communicate.
The researchers from the University of California stimulated these raspy reactions by taunting the crabs with dead and live ghost crabs, a plastic toy crab and a remote control robotic toy.