Could it be? The rare white lobster-pocalypse?
According to the Portland Press Herald, two white lobsters were captured five days apart in the area surrounding Owls Head, leading some to think the rare occurrence is a cosmic sign.
Genuine albino lobsters are a huge rarity, numbering at 1 in 100 million. In fact, they are the rarest of all lobsters. Perhaps the elusive white lobster is changing its pattern, now that two have shown up in the same week off the coast of Maine.
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Or maybe it is just a very interesting coincidence.
Bob Bayer, executive director of the University of Maine’s Lobster Institute thinks it may not be such a big deal. He says if they are actually albino lobsters, this is cause for stir; he thinks maybe they aren’t albino, but rather slightly pigmented.
Regardless of whether or not the lobsters have pigment at all, Bayer says he has never seen anything like this before. Coming from a man who studies lobsters (a lot), this is saying something.
Joe Bates, who caught one of the white lobsters, is also impressed. He has been lobstering the Rockland Breakwater since 1990 and has never seen an occurrence like this before. He says not only was he surprised, but he was shocked to see the white lobster in his net.
Both lobsters were under the legal size, and likely around 5 or 6 years old. Usually this would mean the lobsters get to make their journey back home to mature. But who would toss back two white lobsters?
Both lobsters have found adoptive homes among other rare marine creatures. One will be off to Brooks Trap Mill where it will dwell in a tank of fellow sea animals. The other has been claimed by the Maine State Aquarium. Maybe he or she will find commonalities with the rare blue lobster held there.
Maine lobster hunters will be on the lookout for more white lobsters, as it may be an indication of some weird breeding. Before they go off to their new homes, the white lobsters will be fed a diet of crabs and periwinkles; if they are truly albino their shells will remain white.
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Image via Press Herald