A rare golden lobster has been hauled up in the pots of a local fisherman.
According to the University of Maine’s Lobster Institute, this type of colour mutation is extremely rare. In fact they estimate the odds of finding a golden-coloured lobster is around one in five million.
“No one is entirely sure why these sort of colour changes happen in individual crustaceans,” said Deep Sea World’s Michael Morris.
“It may be some kind of genetic mutation or a reaction to some kind of outside stimulus.
“We also don’t know if the colouration will stay the same when the lobster eventually moults or whether it will revert back to a normal blue colour,” he added.
Aside from the lobster’s unusual colour, it appears to be perfectly normal and in excellent condition. It will remain in the aquarium’s quarantine area for the next few days before being released in to one of their native marine displays.
Lobsters are among the planet’s oldest inhabitants with fossil remains found dating back more than 100 million years. They are also extremely long-lived with some individuals reaching ages in excess of 60 years.
A lobster’s claws grow much faster than the rest of its body. In one giant specimen the claws were twice the weight of the rest of the animal.
As with most members of the crustacean family, lobsters are also able to re-grow lost limbs and even re-generate missing eyes.