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Can shellfish feel pain?

Yes. Scientists have proved beyond a doubt that fish, lobsters, crabs, and other sea dwellers feel pain. Lobsters’ bodies are covered with chemoreceptors so they are very sensitive to their environments. Boiling lobsters alive is particularly cruel. A lobster’s ideal body temperature is between 38 and 42 degrees Fahrenheit; when lobsters are packed on ice, they sometimes “drop” a claw in order to conserve body heat. As many people have discovered, when dropped into boiling water, lobsters will frantically scrape the sides of the pot in a futile attempt to escape. If grocery stores kept live pigs or chickens crammed together in filthy glass tanks with accompanying recipes suggesting that the animals be dropped into a pot of scalding water, consumers would be outraged. These acts are equally deserving of outrage when perpetrated on shellfish.