Tuesday, 1 May 2012

Monster Tasmanian King Crabs

Claude, the gigantic crab, was destined to become 325 crabsticks, but a twist of fate means he will now spend his days entertaining visitors at an aquarium.

The Tasmanian King Crab is a delicacy in its native Australia, but Claude was snapped up by a British aquarium worker who agreed to buy him and two other enormous crustaceans for a whopping £3,000.

He had them flown to the UK and they are now in quarantine at the Sea Life Park in Weymouth, Dorset, before they go on display.

Click The Images To Enlarge!

Claude, pictured, weighs a mighty 15lbs (6.8 kgs) and measures 15 inches (38cm) wide.

When he is fully grown he will weigh a weighty 30lbs and gain an extra three inches.

Although he is safe now he is would have been capable of producing about 20lbs worth of meat - and approximately 325 crabsticks.

The creatures - the second biggest crab species in the world - are likely to go on display at Sea Life Parks in Weymouth, Birmingham and Berlin in Germany.

Rob Hicks, head marine biologist for Sea Life, said: 'They are such impressive creatures we thought that it was worth the cost and effort of flying them half-way round the world to so they can flourish in an aquarium display.

'They had a stopover in Hong Kong and arrived with us a week ago.

'It took them a few days to get over the jet-lag but now they’re feeding happily and don’t seem any the worse of their trip.'

Jemma Battrick, aquarist at Weymouth Sea Life said: 'When I found out we were getting the crabs in I was really excited.

Mini me: Claude dwarfs a British Shore crab who is put on his back for size and to show just how gigantic he is