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01-10-09, 06:45 PM #1
Restaurant sets 20-pound, 140-year-old lobster free at PETA's request
A 140-year-old lobster once destined for a dinner plate received the gift of life Friday from a Park Avenue seafood restaurant.
George, the 20-pound supercentenarian crustacean, was freed by City Crab and Seafood in New York City.
"We applaud the folks at City Crab and Seafood for their compassionate decision to allow this noble old-timer to live out his days in freedom and peace," said Ingrid E. Newkirk, president of People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals.
PETA spokesman Michael McGraw said the group asked City Crab to return George to the Atlantic Ocean after a diner saw him at the restaurant, where steamed Maine lobster sells for $27 per pound. George had been caught off Newfoundland, Canada and lived in the tank for about 10 days before his release.
Some scientists estimate lobsters can live to be more than 100 years old. PETA and the restaurant guessed George's age at about 140, using a rule of thumb based on the creature's weight.
He was to be released Saturday near Kennebunkport, Maine, in an area where lobster trapping is forbidden.
01-10-09, 08:05 PM #2
Of course I was very happy to hear thisArm the sheep!
01-10-09, 08:13 PM #3
I saw this story today as well, and the first thing that came to mind was this is one smart restaurateur. Doing such a newsworthy task of saving the lobster he gets plenty of free advertising for the restaurant. (slow news day in NY) He would also know the meat of this lobster would not be that great, tough and rubbery, probably not good enough for his Park Ave clientele.
Always more to the story!
80-year-old lobster from local restuarant heading back to the ocean
A monster lobster scored a one-way ticket out of a Manhattan restaurant Friday - and not on a fork.
George the Giant Lobster - 20 pounds and an estimated 80 years old - found himself liberated from City Crab's lobster tank, saved by the intervention of animal rights activists.
Executive chef Joseph Vaina and manager Keith Valenti had displayed the hefty crustacean on a huge platter by the lobster tank and at the raw bar since he arrived at the Park Ave. South restaurant New Year's Eve.
Named George by a young patron, the lobster had been treated as a pet, Vaina said. He was never meant to be sold and eaten - City Crab charges $27 a pound for cooked lobster - just to serve as a mascot, he added.
But a patron spotted the lobster in the tank and called People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals, which began lobbying the restaurant for George's release.
"We're really eager to return him to freedom," said PETA spokesman Michael McGraw.
George, unlike certain other celebrities, did not seem perturbed as a crew of photographers shot his picture before his grand exit.
"If he was upset, he'd be slapping his tail. His claws would be up and in a defensive posture," explained Vaina.
"Can you lift up his butt, if he has a butt?" asked a photographer.
George is being driven in a special ice-lined foam cooler to Portsmouth, N.H., where a crustacean expert will help "ease his transition" back into the wild.
From there, George will be driven on to Maine, where he'll be released in protected waters just north of Kennebunkport.
Handling the trip is Mainer and vegetarian restaurateur Larry Fleming, who said he was sure George would be a good road trip buddy - no smoking or fighting over the radio.
"He was taken away from his home," Fleming said. When he returns to the ocean, "he'll be very happy."
01-10-09, 08:19 PM #4
Why on earth would someone dining in a seafood restaurant report a heavy lobster to PETA?
01-10-09, 08:21 PM #5
01-10-09, 08:25 PM #6
01-10-09, 08:26 PM #7
01-10-09, 08:27 PM #8
01-10-09, 08:29 PM #9
what a waste. Bring him over here, I'll give him a nice warm home
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