On some islands these crabs have limited protection. For example, in Papua New Guinea villagers are asked not to collect coconut crabs for food, and on Saipan Island it is prohibited to collect coconut crabs with a thoracic length of less than 3.5 centimetres, or between 1st June and 30th September when breeding occurs (2) (4). However, it is important to conduct thorough surveys to determine the full distribution of this species, and ascertain the extent to which populations are threatened in order to help develop conservation measures. There have been proposals for a reserve in the Togian Islands, Sulawesi for this species' protection, and also the establishment of captive breeding programs (2). Though the coconut crab is not severely threatened, increasing populations, tourism and development on Pacific and Indian Ocean islands will soon threaten this crab as it has done so many species worldwide. It is therefore important to be pro-active and protect this unique species for the future (2).
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