But the promise of a gianterest crab had me searching about for something just a bit bigger than the confusingly named Dungeness crab, which has nothing to do with the underworld and is no fitting counterpart to Dragonesses, ampersand or no. Also known as the Metacarcinus magister (formerly the Cancer magister), two additional ominous names, it was named the state crustacean of Oregon in 2009. An honor to which all crabs should aspire. But Ray Harryhausen, for his movie Mysterious Island (1961), had bought a real crab at a market and had it put down, cleaned, then fitted with an articulated inner framework to use for his stop motion filming process. He alternated his own footage with some of live crabs which he filmed in Spain, so he may well have used a Velvet crab (the coloration aside).
Ultimately, though, the largest known crab species of our real world seems to be the Japanese Spider Crab. These beasties can grow to be nearly twenty feet across, leg-spread included. One can find good pictures of these all over but to find a good one for scale, The Nature Geek has found out one of the best is here. The fact that this crabzilla can be found around Japan is probably just a coincidence and not a byproduct of nuclear activity or accidents. Probably.
Examining animals, plants, and the
environments we use for our tabletop RPGing.
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