We’ve always kind of regarded slipper lobsters with a modicum of respect – cool because they are hardy and interesting, they can’t pinch you and they are welcome in both fish and reef aquariums since they don’t really mess with anything. But our jaw hit the floor when we saw the glabrous fan lobster, Ibacus bruceii, which immediately reminded us of Shredder from Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles.
The glabrous fan lobster comes from New South Wales Australia and it was originally discovered from specimens that were collected at a depth of nearly 500 feet! Although the glabrous fan lobster occurs at depths bordering on abyssal, a few of these guys were saved from bycatch of commercial trawlers where they would have certainly have been snapped up by some kind of fish before hitting the bottom had they been thrown back overboard.
We assume it has to be pretty cold where these guys were caught but so far they seem to be holding up pretty well at average reef aquarium temperature. Regardless of their temperature requirements, the glabrous fan lobster is cool enough to merit setting up a dedicated aquarium, perhaps in a low place and calm open top so you can see it from a vantage point that shows off the unique highly serrated edges of its carapace.