A lobster named Lola is making headlines and for good reason: she has six claws! According to Bangar Daily News, the abnormal crustacean was shipped to Maine State Aquarium in Boothbay Harbor Thursday and became one of the strangest creatures experts have ever seen.
The 4-pound lobster, which was said to be pretty big by Aquarium manager Aimee Hayden-Roderiques, has five claws, which are arranged like a hand on its left side, but the normal side has two claws like a typical lobster would. It’s the first time the aquarium’s resident marine scientist David Libby, who works for the Department of Marine Resources, has come across a lobster like this.
“Sometimes the genes will just get a little mixed and it will grow a funny claw,” he said. “But I’ve never seen anything like this.” Ten he joked that his 40 years of working with animals in ocean “apparently is not long enough.”
"This claw deformity is a genetic mutation," Hayden-Roderiques told CNN affiliate WMTW-TV. "Sometimes they have this throughout their life, sometimes this happens during a regeneration from a damaged or lost claw."
Lola’s in good company, though. There’s all different types of lobsters at the MSA, which range from oddly colored lobsters that are orange, or blue or even two-toned. “We’re kind of the place for unusual lobsters,” said Hayden-Roderiques. “We think the colored ones are about one in a million, but there’s no way to know.” The manager said Lola would be on public display in the aquarium next week, but for now it is living in a holding tank to adjust to the new surroundings.
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It’s thought that colored lobsters have a disadvantage on the bottom of the sea because it makes them easier to be seen by predators, but Hayden-Roderiques Lola was just fine in the wild with her transfigured claw and estimated she was 10 years old.
A fishing boat that is featured on “Lobster Wars,” Rachel Leah, caught the mutated lobster and its captain, Peter Brown, named it Lola. He then donated it to the aquarium where it will surely garner attention, according to Hayden-Roderiques. “Everyone who comes in wants to see the weird lobsters,” she said.