Stop Providing Hermit Crabs as Carnival Prizes

Hermit Crab Robert Verzo

Target: Debbie Elliot, Owner of Elliot’s Amusements, Inc.

Goal: Stop providing live hermit crabs as giveaways.

Elliot’s Amusements, Inc. provides supplies to carnivals in multiple states. One of the things the company provides is live hermit crabs that many carnivals use as prizes. Hermit crabs may be small and seem insignificant, however they are a unique and important species that should not be forced to live life in a tank.

Hermit crabs can live as long as 40 years, however in captivity they typically only live one to four years. For these few, short years, the hermit crabs are stuck in a small tank, fed an unnatural diet, roughly handled and typically live alone. In the wild, hermit crabs can travel with up to as many as 100 other hermit crabs.

Sign this petition and demand that the company stop providing carnivals with live hermit crabs. These animals belong in the wild, not in tiny tanks.


Dear Ms. Elliot,

Your company provides live hermit crabs to carnivals to use as prizes across the nation. While these animals may be small, they are an important species that does not belong in a tank.

Wild hermit crabs’ lives differ very much from the lives of their captive brothers and sisters. In the wild, hermit crabs will travel with up to 100 other crabs. However in captivity, many spend their lifetime alone. Also in captivity, these animals are fed an unnatural diet and handled roughly. In the wild, hermit crabs can live up to 40 years, however many captive hermit crabs die after only one to four years.

Please consider ending your sale of live hermit crabs. These animals belong in the wild. There are many other prizes available that would make children just as happy.


[Your Name Here]

Photo credit: Robert Verzo

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  1. Angela Rabon says:

    I went to their website and asked them to not give away live hermit crabs, or any small animals. Maybe something will click with these people to not abuse any creature!

  2. simon rickman simon rickman says:

    Absolute human arrogance that such small lives have no value. Each and every one of these beautiful crabs has more worth than any of the stupid people who either play for this prize or who give it.

    • Well said. yes, callous behaviour whether intentional or unintentional on the part of those who play and arrogance and stupidity on the part of those who give. And Angela going to the website, yay… Well said, the first sentence captures it.

  3. what is wrong with the human race, how sickening is this sort of thing, those beautiful helpless little creatures should just be left alone.

  4. Cynthia Mattera says:

    These are LIVING creatures, not toys. PLEASE stop giving them away as a prize!

  5. Amanda Brown says:

    I question whether you know what these living beings have to go through to be put into a small plastic box. That’s the same of giving it a life sentence, but it never did anything but exist..
    They kill half these hermit crabs forcing them out of their shells, so they can be forced to wear artificial shells.
    How about if I crack your house open and take you if you’re still alive that is after I get done cracking your house open?

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