Cryptolithodes typicus Brandt, 1849
Common name(s): Butterfly crab
|Cryptolithodes typicus from Sares Head (subtidal).|
|(Photo by: Dave Cowles, July 1997)|
How to Distinguish from Similar Species: Cryptolothodes sitchensis has a similar carapace but its rostrum is widest at the tip and its chelae are smooth.
Geographical Range: Amchitka Island, Alaska to Santa Rosa Island, CA. Less common in the southern parts of the range.
Depth Range: Low intertidal to 45 m
Habitat: Rocky banks, shell rubble near rocky cliffs. Open coast or inland waters, especially in high current areas.
Biology/Natural History: Feeds on bryozoans, coralline algae, and other attached species. Usually lives deeper than does C. sitchensis.
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O'Clair and O'Clair, 1998
Here is the whole individual photographed above. Photo by Dave Cowles, July 2001
Cryptolithodes typicus can stretch its claws out from under the carapace. Photo by Dave Cowles, 1997
Underside of Cryptolithodes typicus. Note ridges lining the edges of abdominal segments, and the roughness of the propodus on the chela. Photo by Dave Cowles, 1997
Note also that the chela (claw) is quite blunt.