Giant freshwater lobster caught

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A Giant freshwater lobster measuring almost a metre in length has been caught in Tasmania.

According to ABC, the Giant freshwater lobster, Astacopsis gouldi, was caught in north-west Tasmania by crayfish researcher Todd Walsh.

Astacopsis gouldi, which is believed to be the world's largest species of freshwater invertebrate, is a protected species and is listed as endangered or vulnerable under Tasmania's Threatened Species Protection Act.

The giant crayfish species is only found in freshwater streams and lakes in northern and north-western Tasmania.

Walsh told ABC that he believes the crustacean is around 35-years old:

"I have caught the biggest lobster I have caught in 20 years. I've only got little hands but it's very hard to pick him up with one hand, put it that way. He's not far off being one of the biggest ones you'll ever see."

Walsh told ABC that the lobsters claws are about 25cm/10" long and it measures around 90cm/36" in length.

"His claws are about 25 centimetres long. He's probably about 90 centimetres stretched out so he's almost a metre mythical lobster.

Giant freshwater lobstersDue to overfishing and habitat degradation, A. gouldi has become rarer.

It also takes a long time for the species to reach sexual maturity, as females can't reproduce until they're about 14 years-old, so many specimens have been caught (and eaten) before they've had a chance to reproduce.

The species is believed to be able to live for up to 70 years.

The lobsters are shy and hide away most of the time. They prefer to live in very clean water and they generally eat decaying wood, leaves, fish and other invertebrates.