Page last updated at 15:53 GMT, Monday, 21 July 2008 16:53 UK

Big lobster proves popular catch

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Mad Jack will get his own cave in one of the aquarium's tanks

A lobster that could be up to 100-years-old has been handed to the National Marine Aquarium in Plymouth by a local fisherman.

The crew of the fishing boat named the lobster Mad Jack and discovered it weighed in at 12lb 9oz (5.7kg).

It is now set to star in the aquarium's Atlantic Reef exhibition after he finishes a period of quarantine.

Staff at the aquarium said they planned to ensure Mad Jack enjoyed a "nice, quiet retirement".

'Battle-scarred veteran'

Fisherman Jack Baker said: "I wondered what it was at first because it was so big.

"In 35 years of fishing, it's the biggest I've ever seen.

"I've seen 9.5lb and 10lb, but nothing like this, so I just thought it would be a good idea to keep it alive, bring it in and let everybody look at it in the aquarium."

Aquarium staff say judging a lobster's age is difficult, and he is believed to be anywhere from 50 to 100.

But, despite this, they say he is certainly ready for retirement.

Steve Matchett of the aquarium said: "He's a battle-scarred veteran, if you like, and has had a pretty tough life.

"We've decided we'll give him a nice quiet retirement. He'll be hand-fed by divers every day in his own special cave which we'll construct in the tank."


SEE ALSO
Fishing ban brings seas to life
16 Jul 08 |  Science/Nature
City centre TV link to shipwreck
20 Jan 08 |  Cornwall

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