A fisherman in Cornwall managed to catch an incredibly rare blue lobster, before chucking it back out to sea.
Tom Lambourn, 25, was fishing off the coast of Penzance when he caught the ultra-rare 'one-in-two-million' crustacean in his lobster pot.
But after taking a couple of snaps, he threw the lobster back into the sea as it was 'too small to bring into land'.
Tom, from Newlyn, said: "With every pot you never know what is going to be inside, and I've certainly never seen one that colour before.
"This is only my second fishing season so I think I've been very lucky.
"I measured it and it was undersized so there was never any thought of keeping it.
"If it had been bigger, I would have taken it to the National Hatchery.
"I sent them some photos of the lobster and they told me it is one-in-two-million so that is quite special."
Its brilliant blue hue was even a bit of a surprise to staff at the National Lobster Hatchery in Padstow in Cornwall.
A spokesperson said: "It is a pretty rare colour morph to come across, about one in two million chance, so we were amazed when Tom sent us the photo of it.
"The lobster was too small to bring in to land so was popped back in the sea so it can keep growing.
"Who knew that a crustacean could be so vibrant?"
While Ben Marshall, supervisor at the National Lobster Hatchery, added: "It is very, very rare and very interesting to see a blue lobster.
"The skipper threw it back as it was under the length you are allowed to catch lobsters in Cornwall (12ins).
"Blue lobsters have a different colour pigmentation in their shells which means they find it much harder to camouflage so they get preyed upon, reducing their numbers."
Blue lobsters get their unusual colouring due to a genetic defect that causes them to produce excess levels of a protein that combines with a molecule known as astaxanthin, this creates a blue complex known as crustacyanin.
In July last year, US seafood restaurant Red Lobster saved the life of a blue lobster after staff found it amongst its delivery of the shellfish.
An employee at a Red Lobster branch in Cuyahoga Falls, Ohio, noticed the unusual - and in this case slightly ironically - colour of the lobster as they were unloading a delivery and got in touch with conservationists at the Monterey Bay Aquarium.
The lobster, who was given the name Clawed, now resides at Akron Zoo.Featured Image Credit: BNPS