A lobster found off the coast of Santa Barbara, California definitely belongs in the upper crust of crustaceans.
The giant lobster weighs nearly 12 pounds and is estimated to be a whopping 70 years old.
Biologist Forrest Galante, 26, caught the extra-large lobster while freediving near Anacapa Island on Oct. 6 and immediately realized he had something extraordinary.
“I’ve been doing this for ten years and I’ve never seen a lobster as big as Albert Girther -– which is his name," Galante told Barcroft TV. "I mean any lobster that can bear hug a man must be pretty huge and he had no problem with that."
California lobsters rarely get above 3 pounds due to overfishing, and Galante admits he was tempted to turn the creature into a giant lobster feast.
“I’ve got to say it was very tempting to take him home and eat him –- he had pounds and pounds of delicious meat but he was clearly a good breeder, so my family and I decided that we had to put him back into the water so he could have more children," Galante said, according to the Mirror.
Galante brought the ancient invertebrate to the Ty Warner Sea Center where he was able to rest and fatten up before he was taken to a protected marine reserve off the California coast, the New York Post reports.
"There was just no way I could kill it for a one-time meal," Galante told ABC7.