Species Index

Ocypode ceratophthalmus
(Pallas, 1772)

Common Name: Horn-eyed Ghost Crab

Distribution: Abundant in the Solitary Islands Marine Park. Distributed throughout the Indo-Pacific region, from East Africa to the Philippines, north to at least Singapore, south to the east coast of Australia. In Australia recorded from Shark Bay in Western Australia, across the tropical north, throughout the Great Barrier Reef in Queensland, south to around Jervis Bay in southern New South Wales.

Ecological Notes: Frequents open beaches below frontal dunes in the intertidal zone. Most active at night where they scavenge above the tide line.

Additional Notes: Horny stalks on top of eyes lengthen with age. Shell pale olive-cream with maroon coloured marking on back, maroon colouring also on lower surfaces of shell and legs. Very active hunter and scavenger, known to eat turtle hatchlings in tropical waters. Carapace to at least 4 cm across.

References: Davie, Peter. Wild Guide to Moreton Bay and Adjacent Coasts. Second Edition. Published by Queensland Museum. Vol 2, p.246.

Atlas of Living Australia website at Accessed 06/12/2020.