All his life, Wayne Nickerson has worked as a lobsterman. He goes out in the morning and hauls up his lobster traps and replaces them back into the deep blue sea off the coast of Massachusetts. He return home with his catch, sells the lobsters at the local market and then comes home to his wife. The routine has not changed for as long as he can remember. And that’s the way he likes it. But now something has come into his life that has turned everything he knows about the trade on its head. Wayne Nickerson has caught a blue lobster.
Although it’s probably news to you, blue lobsters are a thing. And they’re extremely rare. Oceanographers are as excited as Nickerson to get a good look at his vibrant blue catch. It’s like hitting the jackpot for this blue collar lobsterman. And he and his wife have decided not to treat him like all the other lobsters he catches. They have named this special on “Bleu.”
Because Nickerson is clearly on a winning streak and has good luck, he might benefit from investing in some lottery tickets. The jackpot is creeping up to noteworthy highs right now.
But what’s even more amazing is Nickerson’s history with blue lobsters. Although it has been more than 25 years, he caught another one – his first – back in 1990. Nickerson is one of the luckiest lobstermen alive.
The day he caught Bleu was like any other. Nickerson pulled up his wire traps and was going through the motions. But then the special lobster’s vibrant hue caught his eye. He grew instantly excited. He knew he had hit the jackpot once again.
With tender care, he carefully removed the crustacean from the rest of the flock. He didn’t want the others accidentally hurting Bleu.
After he had secured Bleu and got him to safety, he called his wife Jan. He asked her to hurry down to the docks because he had a surprise for her.
“He was very clear about how excited he was,” Jan recalled.
When Jan saw the lobster, her face lighted up like a Christmas tree. She was as excited as her husband to see the extremely rare undersea creature.
She described Bleu as being “more brilliantly blue than the bluest hydrangea you’ve ever seen. Almost fluorescent. It was almost glowing.”
Bleu was blessed with an inordinate amount of a particular protein. It’s a natural byproduct the lobster produces, but Bleu just makes a lot more of it than the other lobsters. While biologists claim it is a genetic defect, it seems more like Bleu is making a genetic advancement in the species.
Bleu is currently being held at Boston’s New England Aquarium. The Nickersons didn’t want to sell him down the creek, so they donated him to the place where he could be appreciated by visitors from all over the world.
And if they had sold Bleu, they would have gotten a pretty penny – the blue lobster weighed in at two pounds.
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