A RARE crab is all white now after being given a new home by Tynemouth’s Blue Reef Aquarium.
The white edible crab, pictured, caught at Blyth, is nicknamed Albie, but marine experts do not believe it is a true albino.
Blue Reef’s Anna Pellegrino said: “The fact that Albie is an adult crab is particularly unusual as crustaceans usually rely on camouflage to protect themselves from would-be predators.
“His bright white shell would presumably have made him an obvious target, so for him to have survived so well for such a long time is something of a mystery.”
“One possible explanation is that crabs have to continuously moult as they grow and Albie’s lack of colouration may only be temporary.
“We’ll have to wait until he next moults to see whether he remains white or reverts back to his natural colouring.”
Britain’s largest species of crab, the edible crab uses its giant claws to crush and tear its prey which includes a variety of shellfish such as mussels. The crab is also a highly successful scavenger.
Large specimens can weigh up to several pounds and live to eight years or more. They can reach sizes of up to 30 centimetres and sport huge black-tipped claws which they use to catch and eat their prey.