Leptograpsus variegatus

Swift-footed crab
Leptograpsus variegatus
Leptograpsus variegatus, Abrolhos Islands, WA, Photo: Graham Edgar
Leptograpsus variegatus
Leptograpsus variegatus, Dunsborough, WA, Photo: Graham Edgar
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Leptograpsus variegatus
Leptograpsus variegatus


Temperate Australasia


Purple chelipeds on adults, rounded carapace margins, and parallel grooves running obliquely across the shell. The species is harvested intensively along the NSW coast for use as fish bait. Active crab that occurs abundantly on rock platforms, particularly along the NSW coast.


Max Size: 8 cm

Sea Temperature Range: 14.4-24.7°C

Depth: N/A

Habitat Generalization Index: N/A

Also referred to as the SGI (Species Generalisation Index), this describes the habitat niche breadth of the species. Species with values less than 15 are found in a relatively narrow range of reef habitat types (specialists), while those over 25 may be found on most hard substrates within their range (generalists). Learn more here.

Conservation and Rarity

IUCN Status: Not Evaluated

Occurrence: Rare (0.9% of sites)

Occurrence describes how often the species is found on surveys within its distribution. It is calculated as the % of reef sites surveyed by RLS divers across all the ecoregions in which the species has been observed

Abundance: Solitary (1 per transect)

Abundance is calculated as the average number of individuals recorded per RLS transect, where present.

Edit by: GJ Edgar. 2008. Australian Marine Life. New Holland, Sydney