Rare Sponge Crab Found Off St Mary’s

A rare sponge crab. Photo courtesy of Kris "Spider" Webb

A rare sponge crab has been landed around 6 miles south of St Mary’s.

The crabs are normally found off the coast of South Africa or in the Mediterranean in deep water and, while they’re being seen more regularly in the UK waters, are still uncommon here.

It stood out amongst the catch in Barry Bennett’s lobster pots off the Seven Stones reef on Wednesday.

Barry said he knew it was special when he saw its distinctive pink pincers and the crusted shell.

They collect and cut living sponge that they cover their shell with for camouflage.

Mark Grove is currently looking after the find in his aquarium. The plan is to move it to a specialist mainland aquarium or sea life centre on Wednesday.