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Rare blue lobster caught by New Hampshire fisherman last week

August 24, 2009 |  1:07 pm

Bill Marconi holds a rare blue lobster he caught in Portsmouth, N.H. At first, he thought he had caught a shiny blue beer can in his trap.

One might say that fisherman Bill Marconi hit the lobster lottery.

Marconi found a cobalt-blue colored crustacean -- a one in 5 million rarity, according to an expert -- in one of his lobster traps last week.

The 52-year-old, second-generation lobsterman was out hauling traps with his son off the coast of Portsmouth, N.H., when he pulled in the amazing 1-1/2-pound catch.

"I was wicked surprised," Marconi said with a laugh. "I thought it was a Miller Lite [beer] can at first."

New England Aquarium Research Director Mike Tlusty told Foster's Daily Democrat that while rare, abnormally-colored lobsters are not unheard of.

Tlusty said the blue lobsters are better at processing astaxanthin, an antioxidant in the food they eat, which results in their shells favoring a blue pigment rather than the normal brownish color.

Marconi has not yet decided what he is going to do with this rare find but is considering donating it to the Seacoast Science Center, which is what he did with an all-white lobster he caught a few years ago.

-- Kelly Burgess

Photo: Bill Marconi holds a rare blue lobster he caught in Portsmouth, N.H. At first, he thought he had caught a shiny blue beer can in his trap. Credit: Geoff Cunningham / Associated Press


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