Blue lobsters are 1 in 2 million

Blue lobster

People ask whether blue lobsters are poisonous, real or rare and even whether they are expensive. Lobsters are blue because of a genetic variation or mutation which is believed to affect 1 in about 2 million lobsters. A certain celebrity blue lobster is in the news today which prompted me to write this short article.

Austin Hopley, the head chef of Hare on the Hill, in Littleborough, Rochdale, UK received one in his normal lobster delivery. He said that he was shocked when he saw it. “I’ve never seen anything like it. I didn’t know what to do with it” he said.

Blue lobster

Blue lobster. Image: Pixabay.

He named the lobster ‘Larry’ and rescued it from his menu after he did some online research and discovered his rarity. He decided to rehome Larry and it appears that he spent a considerable effort to do so. As his business didn’t have the facilities to store live lobsters, they wrapped him back in his newspaper and popped him in the fridge. He believes that they stay alive for a couple of days when they are kept moist and chilled.

He contacted up to 40 people to rehome Larry and he even considered trying to release him back into the waters of North Scotland. He eventually found a home for Larry at the SEA LIFE Manchester Aquarium. By all accounts he has settled in nicely.

In a nice spin-off to the story – and I suspect because of news that the UK government plans to ban the boiling of lobsters in recognition that they are scenting creatures and can feel pain – he decided to stop serving up lobster at his restaurant.

Austin Hopley said: “We’ve decided Larry shouldn’t be the only lobster saved from a grisly fate just because of his dreamy blue coat.”

Comment: a good result. I am sure that I am not the only person who thinks that boiling lobsters alive before they are eaten is absolutely barbaric. How restaurants can do this is beyond me. And they’ve been doing it for donkeys’ years. It seems to be another example of the disconnect between human thought and the fact that animals are sentient beings. It is part of the ancient belief that animals are lesser creatures to humans. That idea was reinforced and validated by Christianity.

Blue lobsters are not poisonous. They are the same as regular lobsters in all respects except for their colour. Neither are more expensive than standard lobsters because they taste the same! Don’t eat lobster at a restaurant unless they kill them humanely, please. Better, go vegetarian.


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