We regretfully report the demise of Blue Buoy, age unknown, sometime last spring or early summer. Following Blue Buoy’s capture near the Isles of Shoals in September, 2003, he spent a short time at a lobster shack in New Castle, NH. From there he took up residence at the Seacoast Science Center in Rye, NH, where visitors, including many school children on field trips, admired his robin’s egg blue color.Blue Buoy leaves behind cousins Whitey, Baloo Bell and his aged uncle, Toughage.
His legacy is not only in the hearts of those who visited him at the Science Center, but in photographs taken by Carolyn shortly after his capture in 2003. These images adorn a blue denim dress as well as her woodwork and jewelry projects.
Whity, who was unfortunately captured about six weeks ago was reported to be an albino due to his light blue hue. The non-albino now resides behind plexi-glass at the Seacoast Science Center in Rye, NH. Positioned between two rocks in his display case, he watches visitors to the Center with a careful eye,
He considers his capture from the northern Maine waters a mixed blessing, since he’d heard that his cousin Blue Buoy was also an unwilling resident there. Whity looked forward to seeing Blue even as he lost his freedom.
It was a real let-down for Whity to learn of the demise of Blue Buoy shortly before he arrived at the Center. In fact, it took Whity quite a while to acclimate to captivity because he became very depressed. His unhappiness was increased when he learned from another unhappy resident that not long ago his great-great uncle, who had escaped the lobster nets and traps for sixteen years, was being offered for sale at a fish shop in Dennisport, MA.
What chance did Toughage have for survival at his advanced age? Would he be stuck in the lobster pen waiting, never to be purchased and put out of his agony, because at his age his meat would be so tough? And consider his cost to the buyer: at $8.00 a pound times sixteen pounds, a buyer would have to shell out (no pun intended) $128.00. What human could afford that? And what about their having a pot big enough to cook him?
In a display across the room Whity saw another lobster, a normally colored one with yellow spots all over its shell. Bikini spent his time huddled behind a rock, barely visible, not wanting to display himself, ashamed of the colorful dots that set him apart among the other lobsters on the ocean bottom. He’d endured much teasing from them.
Whity considered the rarity of Blue Buoy, Whity, Bikini and himself. What made them oddities also made them distinctive.
He wondered if Blue Buoy had just given up, realizing freedom was never to be his again.
About two weeks ago Whity heard about another robin’s egg blue lobster brought to the Science Center. Name unknown, he was in a back room being “acclimated” to captivity. As if any critter becomes “acclimated!” Yet, after a while, captivity and its ease of life begins to fit, and leaving the safety of the cages for the dangerous ocean waters is as mixed a blessing as was entering captivity.
As Blue Buoy adjusted, Whity determined he must so do. Finally, Whity reports “I am finally nibbling on tidbits of food supplied by my captors, who, above all else, are at least kind.