‘One in a billion.’ This electric-blue blue crab was caught by fisherman in NC river.

A longtime commercial fisherman was stunned to find a rare catch at the end of his line in a North Carolina river this week: A “genetically mutated” all-bright-blue blue crab, his delighted family posted on Facebook.

“It’s a catch that’s one in a billion!” Jillian Bowling, fisherman Dean Bowling’s daughter, posted with a photo of the “electric” blue crab he caught in the Cape Fear River in Brunswick County at the coast.

For comparison, she included a photo of a regular ‘ole blue crab with far less illustrious, “normal coloration.”

“I have seen crabs with extreme cases of albinism but never this form of hyper pigmentation,” she wrote. “The electric blue crab ... is definitely a phenomenon.”

Such crustaceans are a very rare find,” according to LiveAquaria.com.

“It’s truly an amazing sight to see!” Jillian Bowling posted late Wednesday.

The crab, which the family named Blue, will live predator-free, eating well and mating with female crabs, in one of Dean Bowling’s crab tanks at their home in the Brunswick County town of Bolivia, WECT reported.

Related stories from Charlotte Observer

Joe Marusak has been a reporter for The Charlotte Observer since 1989 covering the people, municipalities and major news events of the region, and was a news bureau editor for the paper. He currently reports on breaking news.