20-pound lobster headed for Maine instead of main course

(Credit: Urbanite)

By Heather Haddon

Craig the Crustacean is getting a new lease on life.

The 20-pound lobster will be sprung from his tank in a Brooklyn restaurant Tuesday and returned to the open waters off Maine.

The owners of Halu Japanese Restaurant and Grill in Dyker Heights purchased the mammoth sea creature for $100 just last week. Craig found a watery home in a window display to reel in business for the new three-floor eatery. But the owners say they soon got a case of the guilts.

“It's really not good for Craig,” said co-owner Gina Ng, 27.

Craig is upward of 80 years old, and features claws that are larger than a person's face. Finding such a large lobster is rare, said John Peng, of TJ Kings Lobster, the Brooklyn wholesale company that fished up Craig.“I've only seen three in my 20 years in the business,” Peng said.

Another 20-pound lobster made headlines last month when City Crab and Seafood on Park Avenue caved in to protests and released the behemoth creature. People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals had sought the liberation of George from a tank.

Ng said that she stumbled onto George's saga in researching care for Craig, and contacted PETA to pick him up during a late-night change of heart. She had quickly grown fond of his crusty ways, Ng said, and wanted him to enjoy his twilight years.

“I decided to release him to find a mate,” she said.

A PETA spokeswoman said activists will transport Craig to waters in southern Maine that prohibit the fishing of large lobsters.

“He deserves to spend his remaining days in an ocean home,” Ashley Byrne said.

(Photo by Andrew Hinderaker)

Tags: lobster , restaurants

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