Spiny squat lobster

: Spiny squat lobster

Spiny squat lobster by Paul Naylor

Spiny squat lobster

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Scientific name: Galathea strigosa
A bizarre half lobster/half crab, this squat lobster is one of the true stunners of the rocky shore!

Top facts


Up to 10cm long (including tail)

Conservation status

Fairly common

When to see

April to October


Squat lobsters look a bit like a cross between crabs and lobsters or a tiny lobster curled in half! They have a long, flattened body and a tail tucked up underneath. As with many other crustaceans, squat lobsters can use their tail as a paddle to escape backwards very quickly.

What to look for

This species is particularly vibrant, with a stunning red body, decorated with electric blue stripes across the body and around the eyes. Two long, chunky, red claws stick out in front, covered in thick brown hairs (spines).

Where to find

Fairly common around the UK, North east Atlantic, Mediterranean and Red Seas

Did you know?

This species is more likely to be found at night, when it leaves its rocky crevice to scavenge for food!

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