‘Very rare’ orange lobster found in Ajax, Ont. store

Click to play video: 'Rare orange lobster found in Ajax, Ont. gets new home'
Rare orange lobster found in Ajax, Ont. gets new home
WATCH: A rare orange lobster found in an Ajax, Ont. grocery store won't be headed to anyone's dinner plate. Pinchy now has a flashy new forever home in downtown Toronto. Albert Delitala has more on the sea creature's journey there – Sep 30, 2021

A rare orange lobster discovered in an Ajax, Ont., grocery store has found a new home in a Toronto aquarium.

When Niki Lundquist’s spouse told her about a special lobster that had arrived at the grocery store where he works last month, she said she knew her family had to act.

“He was obviously different from all of the other lobsters in there,” said Lundquist, who lives in Whitby, Ont.

The lobster, named “Pinchy” by staff, was orange — and she said appeared to be the target of the other conventionally-coloured lobsters.

“They were kind of picking on him, quite literally,” she added, making pinching motions with her hand.

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So, the family bought the crustacean, determined to find him a better home.

“We were joking, frequently, about (that) we need to free Pinchy,” she said.

Ripley’s Aquarium of Canada in Toronto agreed to take the lobster in, after the family got in touch with the facility last week.

“It’s something that we like to do and we were happy to do it,” said Kevin McAvoy, the head of husbandry at the aquarium.

McAvoy said orange lobsters are extremely rare, with the odds of finding one often stated to be roughly one in 30 million. Part of the reason, he said, is because of the low chances of survival for similarly-coloured lobsters in the wild.

“Animals that have unusual colouring or albinism … don’t have the camouflage that an animal would that is born (with) normal colouration,” he explained.

“So they’re much more likely to be eaten.”

As the lobster known as Pinchy adjusts to life in the aquarium and his growing fame, Lundquist said people can learn from an animal that was just a little bit different.

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“Right now, lots of people are struggling,” she said, “so the idea that you can do something good, something that would help a creature was a really powerful motivation.”

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