A TikTok video shows the moment a fisherman catches a “unique” rare type of lobster before releasing it back into the ocean.
The video, which has been viewed more than 850,000 times since it was posted a few days ago, was taken by Jacob Knowles, a Maine fisherman who regularly posts videos documenting his time at sea and the various creatures captured.
“We caught our first unique lobster,” Knowles says, holding a small orange lobster in front of the camera. “She’s pretty cool, she’s all orange…she looks like she’s wearing gloves.”
An orange lobster may not sound particularly rare, as lobsters are often depicted as red or orange in color.
However, this is not what lobsters look like in real life. Most lobsters are actually described as a mottled brown or blue color, and only after they are cooked do they change to the reddish color they are sometimes associated with.
Naturally, orange lobsters have actually been described as very rare. In 2021, a Canadian supermarket manager noticed that one of the lobsters in their store’s tank was orange in color.
“Being bullied and getting stuck in a tank seemed like a terrible way to go, so we started thinking about what we could do about it,” said Niki Lundquist, whose husband runs the store. the guard newspaper.
They decided to take it to Ripley’s Aquarium of Canada, who happily took the lobster from the “amazing” bunch. In a Facebook post, the aquarium described the lobster, calling it Pinchy, as a “animal of 1 in 30 million.”
Knowles, aware of the rarity of the orange lobster featured in his TikTok video, gives the rare little animal a small nick in its tail using what appears to be some sort of snipping tool. “That way, once she’s grown up… people can’t keep her.”
Knowles then willingly drops the rare lobster overboard and returns it to the water.
The reason lobsters turn red when cooked is due to the interaction between a chemical called astaxanthin and a group of proteins they produce, according to a 2015 study.
Cooking lobsters, which tend to be cooked alive, has been criticized as cruel. In 2021, the British Veterinary Association referred to compelling evidence that decapod crustaceans such as lobsters and crabs can experience suffering and that crabs can be aware of being boiled alive for three whole minutes. They also highlighted the mounting evidence that chilling the animals first is ineffective.