Are Lobsters Bugs? Ultimate Facts About Lobsters

You will encounter lobsters in almost every fancy restaurant. It is expensive and delicious, so it is worth the price. However, this luxurious food can resemble cockroaches and other bugs, which might creep you out.

Lobsters are nearly related to bugs technically but not exactly the same as insects. So, I won’t say they are bugs. Many people believe that lobsters are ocean-dwelling roaches or insects, but this information is incorrect.

The segmented bodies and shells of lobsters make them resemble other bugs, like cockroaches. Are lobsters bugs, then? The truth about whether or not lobsters are bugs will be revealed in this blog. So, if you’re interested in learning, just keep reading!

Are Lobsters Bugs?

Lobsters are not bugs in the sense of insects. However, Lobsters are crustaceans that belong to the phylum Arthropoda.

Then why do some still compare lobsters and insects? In scientific terms, lobsters belong to the phylum Arthropoda (which also includes crabs, barnacles, insects, and shrimp.)

The Latin prefix “arthro” means “joint,” and the Greek prefix “poda” means “foot,” hence the name Arthropoda is a combination of those two words. This is why most people mistake lobsters for insects.

lobster in beach

So, what exactly makes lobsters similar to cockroaches and grasshoppers? Both have exoskeletons, segmented bodies, and are equipped with a set of antennae, which is why they look alike. But that does not categorize them as bugs. The phylum Arthropoda has different types of insects, crustaceans, and arachnids.

What classifies lobsters as bugs? Lobsters are bugs because they are in the phylum Arthropoda, but they are not insects like ants, cockroaches, and grasshoppers.

Also See: Are Lobsters Arachnids? [No, Here’s Why]

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In the Cambridge dictionary, the word “bug” means a very small insect. It can also be an illness that is not serious but can be caused by a virus or bacteria. In that case, we cannot refer to lobsters as “bugs” because they are not at all small and do not carry any diseases. In other words, lobsters are not insects–they merely fall into the same category of animals.

Rather than calling lobsters bugs, we can call them crustaceans. crabs, shrimp, and lobsters are basically crustaceans because they are found in water. So if it’s not crawling on the ground with its legs, it’s not a bug. Thus, lobsters are not bugs.

Why Are Lobsters Called Water Bugs?

Because lobsters resemble bugs and live in the water, most people refer to lobsters as “water bugs.” Similar to our ground bugs, lobsters have an exoskeleton, segmented bodies, and antennae. That’s why lobsters are called water bugs.

The majority of crustaceans—shrimp, lobsters, crabs, Japanese spider crabs, etc.—live underwater. As marine crustaceans, lobsters are considered to be water bugs. The straightforward answer is that every insect has three body parts, multiple legs, two pairs of antennae, and segmented bodies. And lobsters also have almost the same characteristics as those insects.

Because of this, lobster is classified as a subphylum of the crustacean branch of the Arthropoda phylum. If lobsters were actual bugs, then they wouldn’t be in the crustacean branch. Even though lobsters are technically not bugs, people still refer to them as “water bugs” because of their aquatic habitat and bug-like characteristics.

Scientific Analysis of Lobsters Anatomy

Lobsters and other crustaceans are scientifically related; thus, they are in the crustaceans subphylum. If you look closely, you can see crabs and lobsters have exoskeletons and no inner skeletons or bones. However, here is a scientific analysis of lobster anatomy to understand why they are included in the crustacean subphylum.

lobster in hand

Lobster’s Nervous system

Lobsters don’t have brains like insects. That explains why their nervous system is absent as well. Lobsters are invertebrates, which means they only have 100,000 neurons, while humans have 100 billion neurons.

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Lobster’s Body Parts

The cephalothorax and abdomen are the two primary body parts of lobsters. The antennae, antennules, mandibles, and first and second maxillae comprise the head portion. Because lobsters live at the bottom of the ocean, their antennae are mostly used as sensors in murky water environments. Lobsters have segmented bodies and cutting a lobster in half yields two equal-sized portions.

Lobsters Legs

Lobsters have ten legs, whereas insects have only six. The underside of lobster legs is covered in thousands of small hairs used to feel and walk around. Lobsters have four pairs of legs for walking, one pincer, and another crusher located near the front.


Usually, lobsters are not red like the ones you see in restaurants. Lobsters are black, but when you boil them, they turn red.

Are Lobsters the Same As Cockroaches?

Many people think lobsters are the cockroaches of the sea, but scientifically, they are not related. Despite sharing the same Arthropoda Phylum, lobsters and cockroaches have distinct differences. That’s why you cannot call lobsters “the cockroaches of the sea.”

Cockroaches are usually insects that carry diseases and other germs with them. However, lobsters, which are enormous and safe to eat, do not spread any illnesses. Here are the similarities and differences between a lobster and a cockroach:

Similarities and Differences between Cockroaches and lobsters

On the body segment, insects have three distinctive body parts: 1. head, 2. thorax, 3. Abdomen. On the other hand, lobsters have two body segments, 1. A cephalothorax is made up of the head and thorax, 2. Their abdomen is also segmented, unlike cockroaches. 

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Cockroaches have one pair of antennae, while lobsters have three. Cockroaches have wings, but lobsters and other crustaceans do not have wings. Lobsters have ten legs, while cockroaches have six joint legs.

In the case of eating, cockroaches and lobsters are both omnivorous. Cockroaches can eat paper, glue, cloth, and many other objects, but lobsters can only eat sea life and plants. Even though a lobster’s lifespan is much higher than other sea creatures, an insect’s or bug’s maximum lifespan is only a couple of months.

In similarities, both cockroaches and lobsters are nocturnal. That means they are very active at night in hunting their prey. Lobsters will spend their day hiding under rocks to protect themselves from hunters. Similarly, cockroaches hide under the sofa or refrigerator and come out at night searching for food.


In the end, you have learned that lobsters are not bugs but resemble. Despite sharing some traits with cockroaches, lobsters are not considered insects. It’s because they differ greatly in terms of their bodies, shells, eating habits, etc. Therefore, the answer to the question “Are lobster bugs?” is no.

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