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THE IMAGE ABOVE IS A MACRO SHOT OF THE CARAPACE OF A SPINY LOBSTER. DID YOU GET IT RIGHT? READ ON TO FIND OUT MUCH MORE ABOUT THIS BEAUTIFUL CRUSTACEAN.
First things first, if you were guessing what fish was featured in the close up photo on Instagram and Facebook, the answer was that it wasn't a fish, it was the Florida Spiny Lobster. If you guessed correctly, congrats! Spiny Lobsters are excellent eating and are extremely sought after by recreational fishermen. These crustaceans inhabit tropical and subtropical waters of the Atlantic Ocean, Gulf of Mexico and the Caribbean sea. It takes a spiny lobster around two years to grow to legal harvesting size, which is a three-inch carapace, and they can grow up to 15 pounds.
Lobsters spawn in the months from March to August and female lobsters carry bright orange eggs under their tails until they are ready to hatch into larvae. Larvae are often carried thousands of miles by the ocean's currents until they settle on shallow flats where the larvae can hide from predators.
Lobsters do not begin to become social until they reach the juvenile stage of their life. Once in this stage, they will begin to live in protective den structures with other lobsters, feeding only at night. A few hours after sunset, lobsters will leave the safety of their settlements to feed on other small crustaceans, sea urchins or snails. They then return to their dens a few hours before the sunrise, where they will hide from predators until the next night.
Cook your Catch
Here is a simple recipe that is perfect for delicious Spiny Lobster.
- 1 or 2 lobster tails (depending on size)
- Garlic Salt
Rinse and Clean Lobster Tails.
Butterfly tail using a cutting board and a large knife. Place lobster tail on cutting board, top shell up and slice through the shell from the top to the tail. Do not cut all the way through the bottom shell.
On medium heat, place the lobster shell side down on your grill.
Lightly brush meat with butter and sprinkle with garlic salt, chives and parsley.
After around 6 minutes, when the bottom shell begins to turn pink, flip the tail so the meat side is down. Do this for 2 minutes.
To remove the meat from the shell, place Lobster Tail shell side down on the plate and pull the meat out of the shell with a fork.