Ridiculously Giant Crab Escapes Fish Market Fate, Scores Cushy Aquarium Life

05/15/2015 06:53 pm ET

Life is tough when you're an especially large edible crab with fishermen looming nearby.

One lucky crustacean, however, was recently saved from becoming someone's dinner when a seafood merchant showed some compassion.

The massive brown crab (also known as edible crab) was recently caught off the coast of Portsmouth, U.K. According to The Portsmouth News, it topped nine pounds and measured 21.6 inches across, with its claws outstretched.

The fisherman who nabbed the crab turned it into Viviers Fish Market, but a worker there, amazed at the crab's size, asked the nearby Blue Reef Aquarium if it was interested.

The acquarium happily accepted and is now looking for a tank large enough to house its newest resident.

"For an edible crab he is pretty sizable," Rob Davidson, Blue Reef Aquarium staff member, told the Portsmouth News. "They can actually get a tiny bit bigger than this, according to most records, but I have never seen one this large."

Brown crabs have been known to catch their prey by trapping it under their abdomen and crushing it with their powerful claws.

"He's a fantastic-looking specimen with an awesome set of fist-sized claws," Lindsay Holloway, general manager of the aquarium, told "It is clear that he has been around for a long time and it would be a shame for such an impressive-looking crab to end up as someone's lunch."

Aquarium staff have nicknamed the crab "The Beast."

"He’ll be looked after and provided with everything he needs," Holloway said. "And there’s the added bonus that he won’t have the temptation of any crab pots!"

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