E-Fauna BC: Electronic Atlas of the Wildlife of British Columbia

Petrolisthes eriomerus Stimpson, 1871
Flat-Topped Crab; Porcelain Crab; Porcellanid Crab
Family: Porcellanidae

Species account author: Josephine Hart.
Extracted from Crabs and their relatives of British Columbia.
Photo of species

© Royal BC Museum  Email the photographer   (Photo ID #1699)

E-Fauna BC Static Map
Distribution of Petrolisthes eriomerus in British Columbia
Details about map content are available here.

Species Information

Carapace with granules anteriorly, posterior area striated, and few, if any, setae. Chelipeds large and flat; carpus about twice as long as wide, with small rough granules, a median longitudinal crest and a serrate outer margin ending in a tooth distally. Large tuft of dense pubescence at base of finger. Walking legs with fine plumose and non-plumose setae scattered on surface in tufts. Male with a pair of gonopods on 2nd abdominal segment. Female with uniramous paired pleopods on segments 4 and 5.


Carapace: male 19 x 19 mm, female 19 x 19 mm.


Granules on carapace red-brown or white (giving a pebbled appearance) with blue tinges in the grooves and a blue and white “comma” on either side of cardiac region. Chelipeds with dark and light red granules with orange areas and blue-white patches at junctions of segments. Walking legs mahogany brown with 2 patches of yellow on merus, none on carpus, and a red and a yellow band proximally and a yellow distally on propodus with red, brown and yellow on dactyl and a dark brown claw. Abdomen red-brown and blue. Antennal flagellum greyish green. Outer maxillipeds red, brown and blue, with both surfaces of last 2 articles bright blue.


Intertidal, under rocks.



Klokachef Island, Chichagof Island (57°25’N, 135°52’W), Alaska, to La Jolla, California; intertidal to 86 m.
Distribution In British Columbia

Common, but possibly less abundant where in competition with P. cinctipes on outer coasts.

Status Information

Origin StatusProvincial StatusBC List
(Red Blue List)
BC Ministry of Environment: BC Species and Ecosystems Explorer--the authoritative source for conservation information in British Columbia.

Additional Photo Sources

General References

Recommended citation: Author, Date. Page title. In Klinkenberg, Brian. (Editor) 2021. E-Fauna BC: Electronic Atlas of the Fauna of British Columbia [efauna.bc.ca]. Lab for Advanced Spatial Analysis, Department of Geography, University of British Columbia, Vancouver. [Accessed: 2022-09-28 3:24:16 AM]
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© E-Fauna BC 2021: An initiative of the Spatial Data Lab, Department of Geography, UBC