Rare Split-Colored Lobster Caught off Maine Coast | NECN
Maine

Maine

The latest news from around the state

Rare Split-Colored Lobster Caught off Maine Coast

The lobster is orange and brown in color

    processing...

    NEWSLETTERS

    A very unusual lobster has turned up in Maine. (Published Tuesday, July 7, 2015)

    A rare, two-toned lobster has been caught off the coast of Maine. It's part orange, part brown, and could be close to "one of a kind," according to some researchers.

    The rare catch was discovered in a tank at the Pine Point Fishermen's Co-Op in Scarborough. Employees don't know which fishermen brought it in, but they think it was caught in the Scarborough area.

    It resembles a split lobster, which is typically orange on one side and brown on the other, split down the middle. But this one has a unique pattern. Only its tail is split down the middle. Its body is all brown. One claw is orange, and one claw is brown.

    "There's probably quite a few genetic mutations that created that type of pattern," said Adam Baukus, a scientist at the Gulf of Maine Research Institute. Baukus said he has never seen a split lobster quite like this one.

    Another rare feature is its sex. Most split lobsters are hermaphrodites, but this one is all female.

    "It's really strange," Mike Chasse, the co-op's warehouse worker, said. 

    The Co-Op has not decided if the lobster will be taken to a museum or aquarium yet. A representative from the Maine State Aquarium has expressed interest in displaying it.

    For now, she's at the Co-op in a separate tank. Tourists and customers have been stopping by to see her.

    "Scientists are interested in it," said Chasse, "so I figured it would be in better hands here than in a pot."

    According to research by the Lobster Institute, the chance of finding a split-colored lobster is one in 50 million. The institute reports that only the albino lobster is rarer, with the chances of catching it at one in 100 million.

    For up-to-the-minute news and weather, be sure to follow us on Twitter and like us on Facebook. Sign up for our new breaking news email alerts by clicking here and download our free apps here.