Honeycomb coral crab in branching corals

Trapezia septata (honeycomb coral crab) & Acropora sp. (branching corals)

Living commensally with a variety of branching corals the Honeycomb Coral Crab shows off its distinctive colour pattern. The crab actively defends its territory and consequently protects the corals from predators, including the rampant Crown-of-Thorns Starfish (Acanthaster planci). Although common in northern Australia these crabs are difficult to catch as they scamper quickly into deeper branches of the coral when they are disturbed. In this commensal partnership the crab has a sheltered place to live and the coral is protected from predators.

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