A Northern Irish fisherman couldn’t believe his eyes recently when fishing at Belfast Lough as he pulled a rare blue lobster out of one of his lobster pots.
A fisherman landed a catch for the ages recently in Northern Ireland’s very own Belfast Lough when a routine day of pulling up lobster pots resulted in a catch of a lifetime.
Stuart Brown, 28, from Bangor, Co. Down, was left stunned when he pulled up one of his lobster pots onto the deck of his boat, the Huntress, last week.
Stuart’s amazement owed to the beautiful all-blue lobster caught in his pot.
The blue lobster – a very rare creature
Some marine biologists estimate the odds of catching a blue lobster at around two million to one, which puts into perspective how rarely they appear in catches.
Reflecting on the momentous catch, Stuart revealed, “We were sitting in about 50 to 60 feet of water, and the fourth pot came up. I sort of saw it, but I think I thought, ‘it’s just a lobster’. You could hear the tail going.
“I slid the pot down to the crewman who lifted it out, and he made a comment: ‘That’s very blue.’ I looked at him and said: ‘Yeah, no problem.’ But then I did look at it again and said: ‘That’s too blue.’
“You would get lobsters out there that don’t look normal; they’d be a bit browner or redder, just something different with them, but nothing that extreme. I looked up Google to see how rare it was, and it was one in a two million chance of catching it.”
Mr Brown – an experienced skipper
Stuart Brown is no stranger to sea life as he is an experienced skipper and a shareholder in the Co. Down seafood wholesaling business, Seafresh, which specialises in selling lobsters and crabs throughout continental Europe and the UK.
“I’ve never seen one – other fishermen I’ve spoken to who are a lot older than me, they said the same, that they haven’t seen any ever, so it’s a surprise to everybody it’s came in on the east coast.
“It’s still out in the lough somewhere, swimming about as happy as can be. Hopefully, if someone else does catch it, they’ll return it as well,” said Stuart.
Fishing in the sea – full of mystery
Talking about how mysterious the sea can be and how you never quite know what to expect, Stuart surmised, “You just never know what’s going to come up.
“Every day you go out, and you could go a year or two years, and the same thing comes up, and you just carry on.
“Then one random day just, something completely different just lands on the deck, and you just look at it and go: ‘What else is down there we don’t know yet, what else is still to come up?”‘