Posted by LobsterMan on 03/20/08 in Lobster History
It probably doesn’t help to think about a Maine Lobster’s life story before you begin eating it, but it actually has quite a story before it ended up on your plate.
From the start, the chances of survival for a Baby Maine Lobster is slim. It is reported that only 1% of the total eggs actually grow to become the succulent seafood the world considers as the tastiest lobster ever.
A Baby Maine Lobster struggles to live for almost a year inside an egg with its some 10,000 siblings around is mother’s tail with a special glue-like substance and released as larva. When a Baby Maine Lobster reaches a month and 15 days, it can easily be seen bobbing up and down in the water column. It’s actually looking for a place to call home and hide from predators such as cod, sculpin, eelpout, sea robins, skates, and other lobsters.
Towards its 1st-Year Birthday, the Maine Lobster rarely comes out and tries to capture small prey carried in by the water current. But towards its 4th-Year Birthday, it begins to become bolder and stalks little shrimp-like creatures, amphipods and isopods called “sand fleas”, even if they may be twice its size.
Maine Lobsters living in warm water areas grow faster than those in generally cold water areas. Also, male Maine Lobsters grow faster than females which may not go through molting for two years when they are breeding.
A Female Maine Lobster’s tail (abdomen) grows relatively larger than a Male Maine Lobster but the latter’s claws grow larger than females’. Claws make up as much as 45% of the total body weight of a Maine Lobster.
It due to the size of its claws that makes molting a difficult and even painful for Maine Lobsters. This as during the advance stage of molting, the flesh inside its huge claws shrivels to quarter of its normal size.
But despite this, the Maine Lobster’s claw muscles can still get stuck in the narrow knuckle of its claw shell and it has to throw around its claw and oftentimes have to abandon both the shell and flesh!
Ooohh…Isn’t that excruciatingly painful?!
In fact, when you lift a newly-molted Maine Lobster, its claws can just fall-off on its own! And to go through this process a number of times in its life…
So, the next time you hold a live squirming Maine Lobster with its claws flailing around and trying to get a piece of you…well, you now have a better understanding of how precious those claws are but, more importantly, a higher appreciation of how hard life goes for a Maine Lobster.