We’ve all seen how wild animals can develop excellent camouflage for the habitats where they are found. Creatures like stonefish, geckos and especially insect can just about disappear in their environments but there’s at least one animal which trumps them all.
Instead of developing its own camouflage, the decorator crab can actually fine tune its appearance on the fly so it’s always ‘invisible’ wherever it lives. It does this with special velcro-like hooks that grow all over its body, allowing it to secure just about any bit of loose ocean debris it can come across.
This is especially important for living in habitats which may have a seasonal cover of algaes, sponges or other encrusting organisms. And as we’ve seen in our home aquariums, decorator crabs will happily do the same with polyps, zoanthids, mushroom anemones and just about anything that isn’t firmly attached to our reefscape.