132-Year-Old Lobster Liberated After 20 Years in a Tank

CC BY 2.0. karlnorling

Poor sweet Louie the Lobster was returned to the sea after two decades in captivity at a Long Island clam bar.

As heartbreaking as it is to imagine this majestic old guy having to spend two decades in a tank with freakin' rubber bands around his claws, it's heartening to know that people do care – and now the old-timer will be retiring to the sea from where he came.

According to reports, a customer offered $1,000 for the 22-pounder, which he wanted for Father's Day dinner.

“He was trying to negotiate with me. He said, ‘I want to bring it home for a Father’s Day feast.’ I mean, that would’ve been some impressive feast. But I didn’t want to sell it. It’s like a pet now, I couldn’t sell it,” says Butch Yamali, owner of Peter’s Clam Bar in Hempstead.

Louie came with the establishment when Yamali bought the business four years ago; and apparently, Yamali has a heart. Instead of pocketing the cash, he granted the elder “amnesty" and Louie was taken to his retirement home near an Atlantic beach reef.

“Today I’m announcing an official pardon for Louie the Lobster,” announced Hempstead Town Supervisor Anthony Santino. “Louie may have faced a buttery fate on a seafood lover’s plate, but today we are here to return Louie to a life that is better down where it’s wetter,” he added as his liberators lowered him into the sea.

Despite having lived in a tank for 20 years, Louie had 112 years before that to get the hang of things; one expert said that Louie will be fine in his new home.

“He’ll be just fine. There aren’t many predators who want to eat a big old lobster like that,” says Bob Bayer, executive director of the Lobster Institute in Maine. “Hopefully, he finds a mate – and lives happily ever after.”

Now about the other lobsters in the tank ... ?

Via Atlas Obscura