Patterns of Movement

A lobster queue in the Bahamas

Photo credit: National Geographic



Spiny lobsters are normally nocturnal animals. They leave their dens on coral reefs or rock crevices at dusk and forage in the surronding sand and seagrass habitats. Around sunrise they return home and spend most of the daylight hours hidden from view.Many young lobsters also appear to be nomadic. Tagging studies have revealed the some lobsters wander hundreds of kilometers over many months.

In addition, some spiny lobster populations undertake long migrations on a seasonal basis. Lobsters form long lines called queues which stretch across the ocean floor. These mass migrations may last several days with lobsters walking both night and day. Despite encountering changing currents and seafloor topography the lobsters usually continue marching in straight lines.