8 mind-boggling facts about American blue lobsters

The American blue lobster is our newest resident and one of the stars of Tropical Seafest. We shell out some mind-boggling facts about this one-of-a-kind crustacean.

1. Only one in two million lobsters is blue. Those in a brilliant bright blue are even harder to come by.

2. The blue lobster’s beautiful hue is the result of a genetic anomaly that causes them to produce excessive amounts of a certain protein – a blue complex called crustacyanin.

American blue lobster at S.E.A. Aquarium

3. They “smell” with their antennae and “taste” with their legs. Lobsters, blue or otherwise, do not have noses or tongues like us humans. Instead, they use the small antennae on the front of their heads to “smell” their food, and the tiny sensory hairs along their legs for “tasting” purposes.

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4. Like all lobsters, blue lobsters have a hard exoskeleton which they shed periodically as they grow in size. This process of shell shedding is also called moulting. Here’s a video of a blue lobster moulting filmed by Gulf of Maine Research Institute:

5. Their teeth are in their stomach. As with all lobsters,  they chew their food in the stomach between three molar-like grinding surfaces called the “gastric mill”.

American blue lobster at S.E.A. Aquarium

6. Blue lobsters may be rare, but even rarer is the yellow lobster which is estimated to be one in 30 million lobsters. The rarest of all lobsters, however, is the white (or albino) lobster. The chance of seeing a white lobster is said to be only one in 100 million.

Two rare albino lobsters flank a rare yellow lobster. Sept. 5, 2014, on a deck in Owls Head, Maine. (Photo: Elizabeth Watkinson, AP) Source
Two rare albino lobsters flank a rare yellow lobster. Sept. 5, 2014, on a deck in Owls Head, Maine. (Photo: Elizabeth Watkinson, AP) Source

7. Fishermen who chance upon a blue lobster believe it to be a sign of good luck and do not usually eat them.

8. All lobsters, including blue lobsters, turn bright red when cooked. Surprisingly, finding a red lobster in the wild is somewhat rare as well, at a 1 in 10 million chance.

Not cooked, just rare. This red lobster was caught off the coast of Prince Edward Island in Canada on June 10, 2009. Photo: Julia Cumes, AP. Source
Not cooked, just rare. This red lobster was caught off the coast of Prince Edward Island in Canada on June 10, 2009. Photo: Julia Cumes, AP. Source

Watch this video to learn more about our American blue lobster:

Check out our exclusive behind-the-scenes pictures and story of the blue lobster’s journey from USA to S.E.A. Aquarium.

Can’t wait to see our American blue lobster? Get your tickets to S.E.A. Aquarium here

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