If you’re the catch of the day, it’s not bad to be blue — in fact, it could be a life saver.
While going through a delivery shipment at the Cuyahoga Falls, Ohio, Red Lobster restaurant, an employee spotted a standout specimen: There was a rare blue lobster in the batch.
The employee quickly decided that the special shelled seafarer deserved better than being served as seafood, then named him Clawde and sought to find the lobster a forever home.
Through conservation partnership Seafood Watch, which is run by California’s Monterey Bay Aquarium, Clawde was quickly adopted by the Akron Zoo, not far from the Red Lobster branch.
“Our animal care staff was able to quickly spring into action and prepare a new home for him,” the Akron Zoo wrote in a Facebook post Sunday announcing Clawde’s adoption.
According to the zoo, blue lobsters occur in one of every 2 million of the species, and this blue boy is already thriving in his new, isolated chambers.
“Clawde is acclimating to his new home here at the Akron Zoo, in a special tank that has been dubbed ‘Clawde’s Man Cave’ by his care team,” the zoo wrote.
However, it’ll be some time before any human fans can visit him.
“Clawde now resides in [the] Komodo Kingdom building, which is currently closed to guests due to the COVID-19 pandemic,” the post concluded.
Other lobsters rare enough to make the news in recent years have been yellow, orange and two-toned. In 2018, a Maine fisherman was even so lucky — or cursed — as to capture a translucent “ghost lobster.”
That spooky sea dweller’s whereabouts are now unknown, however, as the fisherman tossed the creepy crustacean back overboard because it was too small.
Lobsters’ coloring comes from the pigment astaxanthin, the shade of which changes based on location. Inside a lobster’s shell, where proteins bind with it, astaxanthin turns blue, but on the outside it appears red, University of Massachusetts at Boston professor Michael Tlusty told National Geographic in 2018.
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