Blogging About Critters Since 2007

Sunday, February 1, 2009

Lobsters Are Smarter than Many Think

My stupid Albertson's stopped selling lobsters a few months ago, but I bet they'll start up again. After reading this article, I'm rescuing the next ones I see.

It's about George the 140-year-old lobster who was set free by PETA. There's important information about lobsters in general.

Lobsters are fascinating animals that, like George, can live to be more than 100 years old, recognize individual lobsters, remember past acquaintances, have elaborate courtship rituals and help guide young lobsters across the ocean floor by holding claws in a line that can stretch for many yards.

And although theories abound, no one has ever come up with a satisfactory way to give lobsters a painless death.

A study in New Scientist gives chefs who insist that crustaceans cannot feel pain "claws" for concern. When researchers at Queen's University in Belfast daubed acetic acid on the antennae of 144 prawns, the animals reacted by vigorously rubbing and grooming the affected antenna for several minutes. Dr. Robert Elwood says that his study shows that prawns and their crustacean cousins -- lobsters and crabs -- are sensitive to pain.

Even before the New Scientist study, the European Food Safety Authority's Scientific Panel on Animal Health and Welfare had concluded that lobsters and crabs are capable of experiencing pain and distress and are worthy of legislative protection.

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