Sand bubbler crabs at Radhanagar Beach, Andaman Islands, Photo by Vidya Sury ©

Chow Time!

Spring Six Word Photo Story Challenge: “Nature Art”

Nature’s sand artists never give up!

One of the most fascinating things we saw during our trip to the Andaman islands, as we enjoyed walking on the pristine sands on the beaches, is the sand bubbler crab at work. Sand bubblers are popular on tropical beaches. They make all kinds of intricate patterns on the sand, literally filling the beach with them.

It is so amazing to watch as they busily do this — only for one huge wave to come and wash it all away. And then they’re back because every wave brings them the munchies.

When the tide is out, the crabs come out of their burrows, quickly pick the sand grains, sift through them and eat the yummy parts — the nutrients. Then, they roll the remaining sand into little balls and chuck them away so that they don’t go through the same sand again. Smart eh? They begin doing this from the entrance to their burrow.

These little balls can be found in beautiful patterns on the sand. Some crabs are messy and just pile them up. The longer the time between the tides, the more beautiful the patterns. Like little galaxies.

I could watch them at work all day — so incredibly enchanting!

Watch this captivating video to see the sand bubbler crab at work:

YouTube

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