The Hoff crab... it's hairy, and it's hot

David Hasselhoff

You’re never really famous unless you’ve had a crustacean named after you, and now the already fabulous David Hasselhoff has made another step up the fame ladder.

It’s all down to a newly-discovered crab, scientific name Kiwa tyler, otherwise known as the hairy yeti crab, or, as will probably be its most-used and best-loved name, the Hoff crab.


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Unknown by science until 2010, the Hoff crab lives about 2,600 metres down in the Southern Ocean, so deep that it was only able to be seen, and some samples scooped up, by a remotely operated submersible vehicle. It lives down deep so as to have a hot water environment, atop hydrothermal vents.

So, what does the hairy yeti crab have in common with a TV star from the 80s? Put simply, both have a hairy chest.

In the human Hoff’s case, the hairy chest is just about being sexy… your opinion on this may of course vary. In the case of the crab Hoff the hair is all about survival. Its Hasselhoff-like hair captures the bacteria that it likes to eat, the hair scraping and holding the bacteria from the hot rocks.


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Just like The Hoff, the crab leads a precarious existence. If it moves to close to the heat streaming out of the vent, it dies. Similarly moving too far away, it dies due to the cold water of the deep ocean.

What do you think, do the two Hoffs look alike? Do you think the two could co-star in a new version of Baywatch where they take on germs and waxing?

Image credit: russavia