Metro-East News

Massachusetts restaurant gets rare blue lobster, to donate it to St. Louis aquarium


Nathan Nickerson III couldn’t believe his eyes earlier this week when he saw an unexpected pop of color in his seafood shipment earlier this week.

It was one of many lobsters ordered by his restaurant, Arnold’s Lobster and Clam Bar, in Eastham, Massachusetts — except this one was blue.

“I said, ‘I think we have something special here.’ I couldn’t believe the color,” Nickerson told CNN. “Everyone was circling around it, just wondering, ‘How did this happen?’”

The restaurant owner said he plans to keep it on display at the restaurant for about another week until he donates it to the St. Louis aquarium that is being built and expected to open later this year in Union Station. By allowing visitors to see the lobster, he hopes to inspire the younger generation’s appreciation for marine life.

“I’d like to give the blue lobster to the St. Louis aquarium out of respect to the St. Louis Blues, who won the NHL Stanley Cup Championship over the Boston Bruins on Wednesday night.. He wants to “show that Bruins fans have class,” Nickerson said.

“We want this lobster to stay alive and stay safe.”

Though many people have urged him to release the lobster back into the wild, Nickerson said he doesn’t think that’s feasible because the waters surrounding Cape Cod have a sandy bottom. This would probably be hard for a lobster to survive in.

“There’s no place for the lobster to hide. They like rocky bottoms, and also there are thousands of lobster traps out there now,” Nickerson said. “I’m sure it’s going to get picked up again.”

Blue lobsters are extremely rare

About 1 of every 2 million lobsters is blue, the University of Maine’s Lobster Institute says.

Lobsters are typically reddish brown or greenish brown, and the rare blue coloration of this one comes from a genetic defect that causes the creature to overproduce a particular protein, according to the lobster institute.

“Lobsters are incredible creatures,” Nickerson said. “They can live down hundreds, thousands of feet in the water, where it’s so cold.”