PIX11 NOW: Get PIX11 News and weather on Roku, Apple TV, Android TV, Amazon Fire and Amazon Alexa

Experts identify mystery creature found in UK tuna can

This is an archived article and the information in the article may be outdated. Please look at the time stamp on the story to see when it was last updated.

ARNOLD, UK (PIX11) — The black eyes that looked back at one UK mom from a can of tuna didn’t belong to a tiny alien or parasite — rather, just a baby crab.

When Zoe Butler opened a can of Princes tuna, she found a “purple thing” with “a gut sack or intestine” and a “spiny tail along the bottom,” she told the Nottingham Post.

The 28-year-old mom sent the can to the company for testing and to insure it didn’t happen again.

Experts at the Natural History Museum in London first thought the beady eyes likely belonged to a Cymothoa exigua, a parasitic louse that eats the tongue of the tuna.

However, Princes Tuna’s testing found it was a megalopa — a tiny baby crab.

The company says it’s unusual but unsurprising since tuna frequently eat the tiny crustaceans.

Princes spokesperson said that although “the appearance of the crab will have been unpleasant,” it “represents no food safety risk.”