NUTRITIONAL PROPERTIES AND FATTY ACID PROFILE OF COCONUT CRAB BIRGUS LATRO (DECAPODA: ANOMURA: COENOBITIDAE) FROM NORTH MALUKU, INDONESIA
The Coconut Crab or Robber Crab (Birgus latro, Linnaeus, 1758) is a terrestrial giant hermit crab belonging to a monospecific genus within the Coenobitidae (Anomura). Research on nutritional properties and amino acid composition of this species in the Luwo Island region is still very limited. This study presents a comprehensive analysis of the proximate and fatty acid compositions of coconut crabs (B. latro) at different developmental stages, namely juvenile, adolescent, and adult. Proximate analysis reveals variations in moisture content, protein, fat, ash, and carbohydrates, providing insights into the nutritional profile of these crustaceans. Fatty acid analysis highlights the dynamic presence of saturated and unsaturated fatty acids, with notable fluctuations in specific fatty acid types across developmental stages. The results indicate that juveniles exhibit lower moisture but higher levels of ash, protein, and fat, suggesting distinct nutritional requirements during early development. Adolescents display potential adaptations in response to changing dietary and physiological needs as they transition into adulthood. Conversely, adults demonstrate higher moisture and ash content, indicating potential differences in dietary habits or metabolic processes in mature coconut crabs. The testing of fatty acid content revealed the presence of 8 types of fatty acids, consisting of 5 saturated fatty acids (C10, C12, C14, C16, and C18) and 3 natural unsaturated fatty acids (C18:1n-9, C18:2n-6, and C18:3n-9). The findings suggest that the nutritional composition of coconut crabs undergoes significant changes throughout their life cycle, reflecting potential metabolic and dietary adaptations. Understanding these variations is essential for assessing the nutritional value and potential applications of coconut crabs in the food industry. Further research is warranted to explore the underlying factors influencing these compositional changes and to elucidate the health implications of consuming coconut crabs at different stages of development.
Birgus latro, Coconut Crab, Decapoda, Fatty Acid, Nutrition, Proximate.