Friday Deep-Sea Picture: Two-Colored Lobster

A two-coloured lobster caught by Digby County (Nova Scotia) fisherman Edward Pothier. Tina Comeau photo

Lobster color derives from the presence of three different pigments: red, yellow, and blue. These colors typically mix to form a greenish-brown color. It is not uncommon to get a developmental error that inhibits the accumulation of red and yellow pigment, thus producing a blue lobster. Rarer is a two colored lobster. Because the two sides of lobster develop independently of each other an error can occur on one side an not the other. Most likely this occurs at a very early cell division stage and thus all alter cells on that half are also affected.

Dr. M (1801 Posts)

Craig McClain is the Executive Director of the Lousiana University Marine Consortium. He has conducted deep-sea research for 20 years and published over 50 papers in the area. He has participated in and led dozens of oceanographic expeditions taken him to the Antarctic and the most remote regions of the Pacific and Atlantic. Craig’s research focuses on how energy drives the biology of marine invertebrates from individuals to ecosystems, specifically, seeking to uncover how organisms are adapted to different levels of carbon availability, i.e. food, and how this determines the kinds and number of species in different parts of the oceans. Additionally, Craig is obsessed with the size of things. Sometimes this translated into actually scientific research. Craig’s research has been featured on National Public Radio, Discovery Channel, Fox News, National Geographic and ABC News. In addition to his scientific research, Craig also advocates the need for scientists to connect with the public and is the founder and chief editor of the acclaimed Deep-Sea News (, a popular ocean-themed blog that has won numerous awards. His writing has been featured in Cosmos, Science Illustrated, American Scientist, Wired, Mental Floss, and the Open Lab: The Best Science Writing on the Web.

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