This Is One Wildly Unique Lobster

Split-color, split-sex Maine lobster now dubbed 'Bowie'
By Arden Dier,  Newser Staff
Posted Nov 20, 2023 9:09 AM CST

As a fifth-generation lobsterman, Jacob Knowles has seen his fair share of crustaceans. However, one half-orange, half-blue lobster recently caught his eye—and those of his millions of social media followers, per Boston 25. As Knowles explains in a TikTok video, "it's probably one of the rarest lobsters in the Gulf of Maine." There's a clear line down the back of the lobster: On one side, it's orange, as you'd expect of any Maine lobster. On the other side, it's blue. But that's just part of its uniqueness. Lobsters have a pair of appendages on the abdomen known as swimmerets. In males, these appear stiff, while on females they appear soft. With this lobster, the swimmeret on the blue side is hard, while the swimmeret on the orange side is soft.

It's the "coolest lobster I've ever seen," Knowles told his 2.6 million TikTok followers, per NECN. The outlet notes there's about a 1 in 50 million chance of catching a split-color, split-sex lobster, though another one was found off Maine in 2021. Knowles conducted a poll asking viewers whether he should release the lobster or keep it as a pet. "It was pretty unanimous that everyone wanted to see us keep it as a pet so that's what we're going to do," he said, adding it's possible that the lobster, now kept in an underwater cage, could be able to "reproduce with itself." Viewers also voted to name the lobster, whom Knowles hopes to eventually place with an aquarium. They chose Bowie—in honor of David Bowie, whose eyes were different colors—over other suggestions including "50 perCENT" and "Lobby McLobsterface." (Read more strange stuff stories.)

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