It's a...crab? Company identifies strange creature found in tuna

(Shutterstock)

The mystery of the tuna can creature has been solved! The company at the center of the viral story says it's a tiny crab.


Last week, "Eric" the mystery creature became an online sensation after Zoe Butler of England found it in a can of Princes tuna and posted it to Twitter. People on social media speculated what it could be.


Princes ran an investigation and contacted Butler to say they had solved the mystery: It's an immature crab, they say. The company said these pose no food safety risks, the Nottingham Post reports.

Nonetheless, the company has contacted Butler about some form of compensation, despite Butler's insistence that she only wanted to bring attention so it wouldn't happen again, the Post reports.

The company's conclusion is in contrast with what a museum theorized the creature would be.

"From what I can see I would support the head of a Tongue-eating louse, Cymothoa exigua," a manager at the Natural History Museum in London told the Telegraph. These are parasites that crawl into the gills of tuna and smaller fish and attach themselves to the fishes' tongue.

Butler jokingly apologized to the Post because the creature didn't live up to online expectations.

"A lot of people said it could be aliens," she said to the paper, "but obviously it wasn't - sorry to disappoint."

Related Topics:
fooddistractionfoodfishfood safetywatercoolertwitter