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Jul 18, 2010 10:12 PM

My Live Lobster Declawed Itself - Why?

My sister and I picked up a couple of beautiful live Maine lobsters last night to cook. We kept them in the refrigerator overnight, nothing on top of them, they just hung out, no stress, as far as I know. When I picked my lobster up to put in the pot tonight, surprise! Her claws just came off at the knuckles!
We've cooked many lobsters, these are far from the first, yet this is the first time this has happened to us. Why? Is this common? Is it because the lobster felt it was under stress or danger? Is there anything to prevent it in the future?
I went ahead and cooked the lobster body and claws together in the same pot, but I'm just curious about this --

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  1. Lobsters are canabalistic and will eat other lobsters under certain circumstances. Did their claws have rubber bands on them?

    1 Reply
    1. re: monku

      Yes, I know about the canabalistic qualities; I've seen lobsters in lobster tanks, where one has gone belly up, and the others just literally began picking at it. This was different, and they both had rubber bands on their claws. My lobster, when I picked it up, the claws just fell off!! (They were attached when I bought it.)

    2. My best guess is that your lobster had just moulted. Those large claws shrivel during the beginning of a moult so the lobster can get them out through the joint on the shell, but that's not always sufficient to keep them from getting stuck. Sometimes the lobster ditches both claws inside the old shell. They grow back.

      1 Reply
      1. re: Whippet

        Um - can you explain that again to me? I'm really interested in lobsters and how they grow, their habits, etc., but I'm still a little confused, the way you explained it -
        Also, if any other Easterners have any input, I'd like it as well!!
        As you can see, the topic fascinates me --