The existence of Eye Crabs was first reported by the Anpagan explorer Bertrand D'Alba in his famous collection of journals entitled "The Extraordinary Journeys of Bertrand D'Alba". This creature, resembling an oversized human eye attached to four pairs of legs and a pair of pincers - hence the name "Eye Crab" - lives only on the far western side of the continent of Nybelmar (although unconfirmed rumours claim that such creatures might live in the northern Venlaken Enclave as well). They are usually solitary beings but at times they congregate in certain places for some reasons. The Eye Crabs themselves are a controversial issue for the Anpagan scholars, and this is actually true for many of Bertrand D'Alba's claims. But as much impossible and beyond reason these creatures' existence would appear, it seems that they are, nevertheless, real.
Appearance. The Eye Crab is formed of a huge eye (having a diameter of about two palmspans), to which four pairs of walking legs (of a pink-reddish colour) are attached. A pair of red pincers (and about a palmspan long) is attached on the front side of the creature - meaning the side on which the eye has the iris. The bottom of the eye seems to have a thicker texture than the rest of it. The creature has no apparent mouthpiece and it is yet unknown exactly how it manages to feed itself. There are two versions of Eye Crabs. The nocturnal Eye Crab lives in the Kaerath Deserts (and, supposedly, their eyes shine in darkness). The diurnal Eye Crab lives in the area west of the Nermarein Mountains, very close to the shores. Except their general behaviour and the fact that the nocturnal one's eye is shining in darkness, there are no other significant differences between these two versions.
The Ansaran scholars would say that this creature's special ability is the very
"ability" to exist. The fact that a walking eye with pincers may "live" as such,
multiply and feed without having no apparent means for that, may be considered
indeed quite a "performance". Many scholars on the Ansaran Island suggested a
magical origin for this beast, yet none of them
was ever able to reproduce it, nor to provide a consistent theory for such a
reproduction. Nobody knows how much this creature can live, but it is certain
that it can die - melting into a small pool of sticky yellowish goo.
Territory. Bertrand D'Alba's "Extraordinary Journeys of Bertrand D'Alba" claims that these Eye Crabs live in the Kaerath Deserts and beyond the Nermarein Mountains on the far west of Nybelmar. Some rumours, appeared quite a while after the Ansaran scholars were debating the truth of D'Alba's claims, tell of such Eye Crabs living in the northern wastelands of the Venlaken Enclave as well. But, as D'Alba's accounts do not confirm such rumours, the Ansaran scholars generally tend to dismiss them, as being exaggerations of bone tree reports (if the word "exaggeration" really has a meaning when related to these bone trees).
Habitat/Behaviour. The Eye Crabs are small, harmless creatures (if an eye with a two palmspans diameter may be considered small). They are solitary, except on certain occasions when they tend to congregate in certain areas to just stare at each other. Usually this behavior would be associated with mating, but the total mystery regarding their feeding and mating habits, leaves a door open to any other explanation. Bertrand D'Alba recounted how oftentimes an Eye Crab would start following him around while "staring" continuously at him with its single oversized eye. But one of D'Alba's even more controversial claims (that was immediately dismissed by the Anpagan scholars as being simply preposterous) is that, at times, a solitary Eye Crab would start building small sand castles for no aparent reason: after finishing the small sand construction, the Eye Crab stares at it for a while and then leaves never to return.
Diet. As the Eye Crabs have no mouthpieces nobody knows exactly how they manage to feed themselves. Bertrand D'Alba also claimed that he never saw any Eye Crab involved in a process of eating something. More recent (and very complicated) Ansaran theories suggest that they might have some sort of an original method to absorb heat - which would keep them living.
Mating. Nobody managed to multiply these crabs in captivity, and also there are no reports of smaller Eye Crabs, or anything that would indicate a process of growth in this creature's life. So this aspect is as mysterious as their "diet", but Bertrand D'Alba recounted an interesting story that he claimed was told to him by those strange people that he met beyond the Nermarein Mountains. Apparently the eyes of the Eye Crabs are indeed human and not just human-like. Depending on how they lived their lives, some people's eyes would grow to this size after their deaths and while buried. Then, after a while, when the rest of their bodies are already decomposing beyond any recognition, these eyes would emerge from the ground as Eye Crabs. It is needless to say that the religious flavour of this story determined the Ansaran mages to dismiss it at once, as a pure superstition.
Researchers. The Anpagan explorer Bertrand D'Alba was the first one to report the existence of such creatures in the fifteenth century a.S. For a while, his accounts were the only source available, but recently more and more Anpagan scholars managed to aquire some of these creatures. In 1582 a.S. the High Mage Ramon Stralus promised to grant a free contract for arming a Pacifier Galley with a crew of solid golden golems to anyone who manages to bring him a live Eye Crab. Unfortunately the High Mage died without having to fulfill his promise, which caused the beginning of the so-called "Anpagan Guild Quarrels" (in the seventeenth century a.S.) when the Sea Companies presented the Mage Guild with the first live Eye Crabs ever seen in Anis-Anpagan.