A 14-year-old girl from Old Orchard Beach, Maine, landed a rare catch on Saturday, bringing a bright blue lobster up from the depths.
The blue lobster was discovered in one of the 150 traps that Meghan LaPlante tends off Pine Point in Scarborough. The find is exceedingly rare; according to the Lobster Institute at the University of Maine in Orono, only one in 2 million lobsters are blue, USA Today reports. The blue coloration is the result of a genetic defect, which causes the lobster to produce too much of a particular protein. Lobsters are usually dark green or brown, turning red when cooked in boiling water.
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Meghan named the two-pound lobster Skyler, and the rare crustacean will avoid a dinner plate thanks to his unusual coloration. Meghan decided to donate the blue lobster to the Maine State Aquarium in West Boothbay Harbor. Located about 30 miles to the northeast of Portland, the aquarium is home to several other rare lobsters. Skyler will join three other blue lobsters and an orange colored one that already call the aquarium home.
Skyler isn’t the first rare lobster to be discovered this summer, the Portland Press Herald relates. Earlier in the year, a New Hampshire lobsterman pulled a calico-colored specimen from his traps, which sported patches of orange and dark blue on its shell, as The Inquisitr reported. Late last month, a bright yellow lobster was found in a supermarket tank in Florida and was sent to an aquarium in Rye, New Hampshire by a customer who purchased the animal to save it.
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Meghan LaPlante has a student lobstering license, which allows her to set out 150 traps a year. Despite her young age, she has operated a business, Miss Meghan’s Lobster Catch, with the assistance of her father, Jay LaPlante, for the last eight years. The money she earns from the endeavor goes toward her college fund, as well as her traps and buoys. She has surpassed 1,000 hours of lobstering under her student license and will be able to apply for a commercial license next year. The upgrade will allow her to set out 300 traps. Skyler the blue lobster, meanwhile, will be on display to the public seven days a week.
[Image via USA Today]