Believe it or not, lobsters have some pretty interesting dietary habits! The majority of a lobster’s diet consists of live prey, such as fish, crabs, clams, mussels, sea urchins, and even other lobsters.
This blog post will take a closer look at lobsters’ eating habits. We will also explore some of the myths and misconceptions about lobster diets, so if you’re curious to learn more, keep reading!
People thought, “Lobsters eat only dead things.” However, it is proven wrong when marine biologists do more research into it. Lobsters eat other sea creatures like fish, crabs, mussels, sea urchins, and others. They also eat natural sea plants.
Lobsters generally feed on what is available to them in their environment. In areas with plenty of food, they tend to feed more frequently. However, when food is scarce, lobsters will slow down their feeding activities and can even go for months without feeding.
You will be surprised to know that lobsters have a cannibalistic nature. That is, if there is insufficient food, a hungry lobster will not hesitate to eat other lobsters. In that case, they even consume baby lobsters.
Therefore, keeping these creatures in separate tanks when kept in captivity is essential because otherwise, they might end up eating each other. Now that we’re talking about tanks, it’s worth noting that feeding lobsters in an aquarium are a bit different.
Although a lobster in an aquarium can still eat the same foods as wild ones, they need additional nutrition. In that case, commercial fish feed like pellets can be added to their diet.
For several weeks after hatching, juvenile lobsters float freely in the water column, where they feed on zooplankton to maintain their rapid development.
As they age and develop, they learn how to capture prey. They also learn about themselves. In a couple of months, they are prepared to act like an adult lobster for eating.
Lobsters are known as opportunistic eaters since they feed on both live sea creatures and plants. Their diet comprises fish, mollusks, crustaceans, worms, and some plants such as phytoplankton, seaweed, and algae.
In addition to this, they will also go foraging or cannibalism (eat their own species) if it’s their only option. All in all, lobsters’ eating habits mainly depend on their habitat.
Since lobsters have different anatomy than other fish and sea life, their eating technique is very different. Look at its crusher claw which is used to crack open the shellfish. And its ripper claw tears apart the food. Just behind the claws, the 2 pairs of legs are also used for catching and devouring food.
After using its claws to tear the food, it puts it in its mouth, where it is eaten and nourishes it. The several appendages attached to the mouth help move food toward consuming it.
You may ask now, “Do lobsters have teeth?” Well, yes, they have teeth, but not in the mouth. Their teeth are located in their digestive system. It appears that three molars in the stomach do the chewing. Here the food is ground into a pulp before passing down the gullet and being digested.
If there is food within clawing distance, a lobster will eat as frequently as possible. There is a specific time schedule or amount of food that a lobster eats in one day.
In the wild, an adult lobster may consume up to 1 pound of food per day, including shrimp, clams, mussels, and small fish. Juvenile lobsters feed on smaller prey like plankton and bottom-dwelling organisms.
Moreover, they alter their diet if food is scarce, especially in the spring. Plants and sponges provide the necessary energy during this period.
While lobsters are in captivity, they need to be fed food pellets that sink to the bottom of their aquarium. They should only be given as much food as they can consume within three minutes twice a day.
Wild lobsters typically feed on what’s available in their environment. But captive-raised lobsters require additional nutrition since they don’t have natural sources of food. So what happens if they don’t get enough food? Will they survive without it?
In the wild, lobsters can survive for more than captive-raised ones. In the ocean, they can easily survive for more than a month. In their natural habitat, lobsters can find everything they need to survive without having to worry about what they should eat each day.
However, things are different in an aquarium since there isn’t any natural food available. In captivity, lobsters can survive for only one or two weeks without being fed; if more than three weeks pass, the lobster will experience starvation, leading to death. Therefore, captive lobsters must be given food regularly.
Yes, lobsters bite but not with their teeth. Their bite can be called “Pinch”. That is because lobsters use their ripper claw or pincher claw to bite or cut. And we must tell you that maximum pressure of 100 PSI can be applied by this claw, which is so deadly.
In general, lobsters are not dangerous to humans. Even though they are omnivores, most animals they consume are much smaller than lobsters. So there is no danger to you if you swim around them.
However, if they perceive you as a threat, they may bite you with their claws before trying to escape. Still, given a chance, they would likely eat a human corpse (dead body).
Lobsters are capable of extreme aggression, often resorting to physical conflict over territory, food, and mates. Lobsters are very possessive of their territory and form a social order of dominance among the other lobsters in their immediate environment.
If you have lobsters in your aquarium, keeping them away from other inhabitants is always better due to their aggressive attitude.
Lobsters will eat anything they can find, including other lobsters, dead animals, and live plants. They are not picky eaters and will consume whatever is available to them in their natural habitat or what they are given in captivity.