Some of you seem as taken with the crab patterns as I was, so here’s a couple more pics for you.
I love the patterns. They also remind me of embroidery or fabric. And I was struck by how many of the patterns, images and designs we see in the man-made world have their roots in nature. Like the pattern on this shell I found on Cape Trib beach (in real life the shell is only about one centimetre across).
But back to the crabs… they are tiny. The smallest one I saw was barely a few millimetres across (including legs) and the largest was about two centimetres (I think that’s about an inch). Amazing. Even more amazing was looking along the beach and seeing the sand appear to move with all the crabs scurrying about.
In the middle of each pattern (or thereabouts) is a little hole. The crab digs the hole, and in so doing makes the “bumbles” that he brings to the surface and lays out in the beautiful pattern. I don’t know how he knows to do this, or why he does it. But he does (at low tide, at least). And the results are beautiful.