A veteran lobster which was part of a PhD project at one of the world’s top oceanography centres, is enjoying his retirement at Blue Planet Aquarium in Cheshire Oaks.

The common lobster, thought to be about 20 years old and has been nicknamed Don by aquarists, was donated to the aquarium by the University of Southampton’s ocean and Earth science faculty.

The faculty is part of the National Oceanography Centre Southampton, a collaboration between the Southampton-based part of the Natural Environment Research Council’s National Oceanography Centre, and the University of Southampton.

Blue Planet Aquarium’s marine aquarist Stacy Adams said: “The university has some amazing marine displays and is involved with a huge range of research project on every aspect of the world’s oceans.

“Don was part of a PhD project and the university wanted to find him a suitable retirement home once the research was completed.

“After spending a short time in our quarantine area he has been relocated to one of our large rockpool displays, which is filled with nooks and crannies.

“He’s already chosen a favourite spot and is making himself very much at home.”

Lobsters are among the planet’s oldest inhabitants with fossil remains found dating back more than 100 million years.

They are also extremely long-lived with some individuals living more than 60 years.

All lobsters are born with a cutting and a crushing claw. There is a 50:50 chance of developing a right- or left-crusher depending upon which claw is used more frequently.