Greg Ward, who has been fishing for past 32 years has joined an elite club after catching a rare blue lobster. When he first saw the creature he thought he had snagged an albino lobster when he examined his catch off the coast Monday where New Hampshire borders Maine.
Later, he realized that his hard-shell lobster was a unique blue and cream color.
A rare blue lobster caught by local lobsterman, Greg Ward, is on display at the Seacoast Science Center in Rye, New Hampshire
Scientists say just one lobster in three million is blue – the result of a genetic defect that causes them to produce an excessive amount of protein
Excessive levels of a protein combines with a red caratenoid molecule known as astaxanthin, forming a blue complex known as crustacyanin. It is this that makes the lobster turn blue
‘This one was not all the way white and not all the way blue,’ Ward said. ‘I’ve never seen anything like it.
‘Usually, the stronger lobsters are usually the reddish brown color but this one still had a hard shell,’ he told The Portsmouth Herald.
The oft-cited odds of catching a blue lobster are one in three million. But no one knows for sure.
The blue lobster is no different from the regular lobster- it’s only the mutation which influences the lobsters outer shell color
Prior to being cooked and turning red, most lobsters are found in browns and dark greens, as seen in this file photo of them removed from a cage at sea
Ward says the lobster is unlike anything he’s ever seen.
‘Blue lobsters are still pretty uncommon,’ Royer said. ‘We’ll get about five or six calls every summer. Every time we get a call about an albino lobster, I get a little skeptical just because they are so rare.’
He handed over the rare crustacean to the Seacoast Science Center in Rye to study and put on display.
Center aquarist Rob Royer says Ward’s blue lobster will go on display in the ‘exotic’ lobster tank once it acclimates to the water.
He said it currently has another blue lobster on display, a bright orange lobster and a calico covered lobster.
The Gulf of Maine, which includes the coast on New Hampshire, has one species of lobster, Homarus americanus, the American lobster.
The lobster mostly appear brown or dark green in nature prior to boiling, but scientists revealed that just one lobster in three million is blue – the result of a genetic defect that causes them to produce an excessive amount of protein.
The blue lobster is no different to a regular lobster – it is only the mutation which influences the lobster’s outer shell color.
Rarest: A calico lobster at the New England Aquarium is pictured which are found in one-out-of 30million
Yellow: This yellow lobster, like the calico, has a one-in-30million chance of being found, as seen at Massachusetts’ New England Aquarium
Natural reds: Even more rare than blue lobsters are red lobsters which are found this color, pictured, in one out of 10 million before being cooked