So it seems I have another female hermit crab that is fertile. I really have no idea at what size they become fertile but I assumed she was too small. Females enter their fertile cycle following a molt. I have no idea how long this phase lasts. MBD was wooing Ditto for several weeks but she showed little interest.
This unnamed female is being courted by Jane Fonda (m) and Oreo (who is a male after all lol). Jane had her guarded most of yesterday but last night Oreo got the upper hand. However, the female seems less open to Oreo than Jane. She allowed Jane to grasp her shell and they would sit just so for long periods until Oreo interfered. She will not allow Oreo to do the same. She stays just out of his reach. This morning she is hiding from them but they have not given up.
I noticed a similar behavior in the male clypeatus to the strange pose that MBD was holding near Ditto. You can see in one of the photos that Oreo has drawn up his claws (like the Karate Kid). I am unsure if he is presenting his abdomen or simply showing he is no threat. I don’t think the latter because she doesn’t shrink away from them as if scared.
I leave town tomorrow night so I imagine all this carrying on will be over by the time I get back. It’s a little stressful to watch the males competing for her but as of now they have never latched on or harmed the other. Just lots of macho kicking and shoving.