Euastacus sulcatus

| 24 Comments
lamingtoncray.jpg

Euastacus sulcatus — Lamington spiny cray, Lamington Plateau, southeast Queensland, Australia

24 Comments

I really like blue animals.

Somebody should do an experiment to see if this critter tastes like chicken.

Henry J said:

Somebody should do an experiment to see if this critter tastes like chicken.

Nope, it tastes like LOBSTER, which is all to the better!!!

I don’t find a ‘Wiki’ entry. Does anyone know how big this is?

From the page linked to the picture:

Ranging in size from 10cm to 90cm,

Now 10cm seems reasonable for a crab, but 90? I didn’t know crabs got that big. What if it doesn’t fit on the grill?

This one was about 15 cm (6 inches) long in the body, which I’m told is quite a big one. I find 90cm very hard to believe…

Now 10cm seems reasonable for a crab, but 90? I didn’t know crabs got that big. What if it doesn’t fit on the grill?

one, it’s a lobster, an they do get that big (I’ve seen vids of one that weighed over 30 lbs).

two, some crabs also get that big (legspan) like king crabs and other large spider crabs.

..edit:

actually, it looks more like a freshwater blue-phase crayfish now that i get a longer look at it.

If so, then yeah, a 90cm freshwater crayfish would indeed be something I’ve never heard of before.

I stick with the large lobsters and crabs though (i used to catch crabs that big myself).

I is Australian, and used to the western and southern rock lobster. This is a different species, but the ones I know have a minimum legal head length of 98.5 mm - measured by a gauge from the shelf at the level of the eyes to the top rear point of the head carapace. That would mean that the minimum legal size was around 25 cm long overall. But they come much larger than that. I have seen reef western crays of around 40 cm in body length, and I am assured by cray fishermen that there are much larger ones still in the cold waters of the Southern Ocean. They’re not much taken, because with the really big ones, the flesh is considered coarser and less succulent.

I sometimes think we’re spoiled for seafood in this country. Until recently blue sardines and red mullet were considered only suitable for bait.

Ichthyic said:

Now 10cm seems reasonable for a crab, but 90? I didn’t know crabs got that big. What if it doesn’t fit on the grill?

one, it’s a lobster, an they do get that big (I’ve seen vids of one that weighed over 30 lbs).

two, some crabs also get that big (legspan) like king crabs and other large spider crabs.

For a moment, I thought this was the Queensland blue mountain crayfish, and you mean by crabs like the giant Tasmanian or Japanese spider crabs?

or Japanese spider crabs?

ayup.

In CA, we have a species of “spider” crab that gets pretty big too:

http://www.mbayaq.org/efc/living_sp[…]mp;inhab=524

as for this guy, there are some webpages about them:

http://www.stewartmacdonald.com.au/[…]nd-frogging/

damn site bigger than the freshwater crayfish we see around CA.

Henry J said:

Somebody should do an experiment to see if this critter tastes like chicken.

It must be inedible. As George Carlin said, there’s no blue food. ;-)

A correspondent tells me of doing a walk at Lamington alongside a group of boarders from a Brisbane Catholic school. They caught a few crays, boiled them up in a billy and ate them for lunch. No word on what they tasted like, though. (This happened decades ago, I hasten to add… but even then, Lamington was probably a national park, so eating the fauna was definitely not on.)

It must be inedible. As George Carlin said, there’s no blue food. ;-)

http://lamington.nrsm.uq.edu.au/Doc[…]quandong.htm

Well they may be edible but they’re not very palatable. They’re in fruit now.

I saw one of the blue crays once but didn’t eat it.

I’ve had the generic sort of cray (aka “crawdad”) you find in lakes and rivers in the lowland U.S. They’re available in various chain seafood restaurants, and are generally pretty flavorless. A good cook can spice up the batter, but that’s about the limit of the flavor options.

But one memorable spring, a large group of them settled in a seasonal pond near my parents’ rural home (really a local low spot in the riparian corridor maintained along the local river for flood control). My mother, in a burst of uncharacteristic creativity, tied a bit of bacon to the end of some fishing line and tossed it into the pond. Within minutes a crawdad had grabbed the bait, and was not about to let go just because someone was pulling it out of the pond by the fishing line. Within an hour, Mom had two dozen of the little beasties, kindly knocked on the head into unconsciousness, ready to go into the pot.

Dinner that night was sublime.

The next spring, the river flooded enough to redistribute the soft sediment about the pond and destroy it, and there was never another opportunity to catch and cook the succulent crawdads. Since then, I have never eaten another of those tasteless restaurant imitations.

I have seen a fresh water blue lobster thing in Victoria when I was a kid. It was a long time ago and I seem to remember it being darker.

Sure tastes like lobster though.

Finally something actually interesting. Thanks!

NotedScholar said:

Finally something actually interesting. Thanks!

So then how did the blue crayfish get from Mount Ararat in Turkey to Queensland, Australia?

Stanton said:

NotedScholar said:

Finally something actually interesting. Thanks!

So then how did the blue crayfish get from Mount Ararat in Turkey to Queensland, Australia?

Vegetation mats. Probably with bits of garlic in them, for flavor.

Boiling Crawfish: If you have not already done so, drink a cold beer.

In a large (60- to 80-gallon) pot over high heat, add enough water to fill a little more than halfway.

Squeeze out the juice out of the lemon halves into the water and throw the lemon halves into the water.

Add crawfish or crab boil seasoning (see left column).

Cover pot, turn on the burner full blast, and bring water to a boil; boil 2 to 3 minutes to allow the spices to mix well. NOTE: It needs to be hot enough to bring the pot to a rolling boil in about 15 minutes.

Using a large wire basket that fits into the pot, add onions, sausage, mushrooms, and potatoes. Maintain a boil and cook 10 minutes or until potatoes are tender.

Add crawfish to the wire basket, stirring them a bit. Once the water starts a rolling boil again, boil 5 minutes. Regulate the burner so the rolling boil is maintained, but where the pot does not boil over.

Turn the burner off, keep the pot covered, and let the crawfish soak for 20 to 30 minutes. Remove wire basket from pot.

Remove the strainer from the water, and rest it on the top of the pot using two boards laid on the top of the pot as a rack. Let the crawfish drain.

http://whatscookingamerica.net/Seaf[…]fishBoil.htm

:-)

Wheels, thanks for your observation. I’ve always been troubled how the dozens of endemic species of Hawaiian fruit flies got there from Ararat. Vegetation mats makes perfect sense. Now can anyone help me with 17/13 year locusts or blind cave fish? David

Henry J said:

Somebody should do an experiment to see if this critter tastes like chicken.

If I’m not wrong they are cooked them alive. So I’ll never and ever eat.

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This page contains a single entry by Jim Foley published on October 23, 2008 12:00 PM.

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