The debate over whether crustaceans feel pain goes on
SEAFOOD.COM NEWS March 11, 2014 -
A scientist and a seafood chef walk into a bar. "We have a mutual interest," says the scientist. "I study crustaceans and you cook them. But the chef wanted to know just one thing: Do the animals feel pain?
Robert Elwood had been working with crabs and prawns for the better part of three decades when Rick Stein confronted him with this question in a pub on the coast of Northern Ireland.
Although some people are horrified by the idea of cooking lobsters alive or the practice of tearing claws from live crabs before tossing them back into the sea, such views are based on a hunch. We know very little about whether these animals - or invertebrates in general - actually suffer. In Elwood's experience, researchers are either certain the animals feel pain or certain they don't. "Very few people say we need to know," he says.
Ultimately, we are up against the problem of consciousness. Like all subjective experience, pain remains private to each individual, leaving us only with educated guesses.Full Story »