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New Lobster Species Discovered

New Lobster Species Discovered

Dr. Jo Taylor from Museum Victoria, in Australia recently discovered two new species of squat lobsters. Squat lobsters typically live at great depths; deeper than 500 meters. Some even live at depths of 3,000 meters. They are distributed throughout the oceans, and there are over 800 species. Like a number of species with misleading names, they actually are not lobsters, but more closely related to crabs. Dr. Taylor said, “They’re affectionately known in the business as ‘squatties.’ They’re just everywhere, all over the world, and they’re often found in large numbers.” (Source: Museum Victoria)

The biology of squat lobsters is not known as much as some other species due to their widespread distribution, complex environments and a relative lack of commercial interest compared with real lobsters. A somewhat famous example of a squat lobster is the yeti crab, which was discovered at about 1,500 meters near Easter Island living near hydrothermal vents.

Fortunately the deeper situated squat lobsters are less easy to catch for commercial fishing outfits, so they are somewhat protected. Still, some of them are caught and sold in restaurants as langostino lobster, a name which adds even more confusion to the picture, as langostino actually refers to prawns. A langostino lobster would be a prawn lobster, which doesn’t seem to make such sense, especially if squat lobsters are really crabs.

Long John Silver’s faced controversy over their advertising of langistino lobster, because it led consumers to believe they were getting lobster at very low prices. There was enough of a kerfluffle about the situation, National Public Radio did a story about it.

Image Credit: Dr. Jo Taylor

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70 comments

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8:20PM PDT on Apr 21, 2012

thanks

9:06AM PST on Dec 27, 2011

Looks like a big red Crawdaddy!

11:50AM PST on Dec 5, 2010

Very interesting. Thank you.

6:06AM PST on Nov 18, 2010

Thanks for the info.

11:30PM PDT on Nov 3, 2010

That's Amazing! we have been finding lots of new species lately!

11:28PM PDT on Nov 3, 2010

that's amazing, were finding new species all the time nowadays!

9:26PM PDT on Nov 2, 2010

How do they taste?

3:32PM PDT on Oct 27, 2010

Amazing creatures,thanks.

11:30PM PDT on Oct 25, 2010

we need all the species we can get. and to poster above, they look like giant bugs to me, too. tasted one once.

6:42PM PDT on Oct 20, 2010

I hope they are poisonous so that humans cant eat them...that would be a nice discovery..

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