Deep Sea Crabs Have A Food Fight

The deep sea never fails to produce wild video footage.

Last year, NOAA was able to capture this crazy video of a few crabs fighting over a squid in Washington Canyon. Food is always important for survival, but even more so for species that live in the deepest part of our oceans. The competition of food is clearly fierce.

crabs fighting web

In the video, you can see two larger crabs in a heated battle for the squid. The smaller, lighter colored crab lags behind, not really in the fight but trying to stay optimistic. It’s not clear who the winner of the food fight is, but we can be pretty sure it’s not the squid.

Aside from just bringing back crazy video like this, being a viral hit, deep sea expeditions like this one on the NOAA Ship Okeanos Explorer, produce important information for researchers. They are able to see a slice of the lives of these far away creatures and learn more about their behavior and how they catch and eat their food.

crabs food fight

The remotely operated vehicle, named Deep Discoverer, traveled to the ocean floor, 645 meters into the abyss. Other creatures spotted included goosefish, hydromedusa, and colonies of deep-sea corals.


Crab Food Fight: September 6, 2014Last year, we shared a series of videos of deep-sea predation encountered over the course of the 2014 Atlantic Canyons and Seamounts expedition. While these videos definitely rank high on the “cool” factor, being able to witness these kinds of predation events live offers scientists unique glimpses into the lives and behaviors of critters of the deep.In this video, several crabs fight over a recently caught squid, highlighting that in the deep ocean, resources are often scarce and organisms are in fierce competition for food.Check out the other predation videos here:

Posted by NOAA Office of Ocean Exploration and Research on Thursday, November 5, 2015