Sunday, July 20, 2008

A Crustacean Conundrum

What to do with a mammoth lobster?

A countrywide bidding war has begun to boil over a 100-year-old, 10-kilogram Bay of Fundy lobster.

An Ontario woman slapped down $3,500 yesterday, eyeing a family feast.

A Vancouver woman, who wants to fly to New Brunswick to release the lobster named Big Dee-Dee, says she needs the weekend to rally donations to become the highest bidder.

It's now the animal lovers versus the meat eaters for the rights to the crustacean caught earlier this month.

"I never thought it would get this popular," said Denis Breau, owner of aptly named Big Fish, a seafood shop in Shediac, N.B., where Big Dee-Dee is living in a tank.

Being rather fond of lobster (in the gustatory and digestive sense) I'd be tempted to bid myself, if it weren't so expensive. However, it looks as if Big Dee-Dee has been reprieved, according to a later report.

Now the owner of the New Brunswick fish store behind the auction says he's going to donate the lobster to a marine science centre to live out the rest of its days.

"I thought about it for quite a few hours but I thought it's best for business to do it like this ... no bitter feelings," said Denis Breau, the owner of the Shediac, N.B., store appropriately called Big Fish.

Breau agreed last Friday to accept a $1,000 bid from a Vancouver woman to release the lobster into the ocean, but said on Sunday he may simply donate the metre-long lobster at no cost to the aquarium at the Huntsman Marine Science Centre in St. Andrews, N.B.

"We can't set a lobster like that free just anywhere," Breau said, adding the lobster wouldn't survive a transition back into the ocean due to the change in temperature.


I wonder if lobsters have ever been hijacked from the Huntsman Center?



William the Coroner said...

It needs to be taken to Maine--they have very strict minimum AND maximums on the sizes of lobster that can be taken. Besides, one like that is really valuable breeding stock.

And one that big would be tough and rubbery.

Peter (NOGH) said...

Newsflash! Big Dee-Dee, the 100 pound lobster has gone missing from its' tank, it was reported today.

Police are investigating, but aren't hopeful. According to a Department spokeperson, the only clue at the scene was a trail of melted butter.


Anonymous said...

Don't forget in the 80's or 90's when Saturday Night Live had 2 phone numbers up to save or cook Larry the Lobster ......... I can't remember the out come but I think it involved butter

Rogue Medic said...

"What? Some people want to throw me in the ocean, where I would have to hunt for my food? I'd rather be boiled alive." :-)

phlegmfatale said...

Yes - what William said - plus, I wouldn't dream of eating a lobster so old and still breeding - the older a lobster is, the more eggs she produces exponentially. Yes: exponentially.

I believe in eating lobster. Eat early, eat often, I say, but much care need be taken that the right lobsters are chosen for table, saving the old breeders to keep doing what they've survived many decades and doing so well.

One of the best non-fiction books I've ever read is The Secret Life of Lobsters by Trevor Corson. You'd be amazed how mysterious these primitive creatures have been to us for many centuries, and it's heartening to know how the folks who mine the sea for this treasure are most dilligent about researching and ensuring the preservation of the species. Fantastic reading about some very bizarre creatures.

phlegmfatale said...

What concerns me is that well-meaning activists who may have stolen the lobster from the tank may have killed it with thermal shock or placing it in water with even trace elements of pesticide. I think the public would be dazzled by the number of animals that have been "murdered" by their would-be "rescuers."

Someone should research that.