Crayfish photo.jpgI was running in Golden Gate Park this afternoon, and I jogged past a lobster. It may have been a crawfish. At any rate, it was some sort of lobster-like creature. I wish I’d had my camera with me, but alas I did not, and it was gone on my way back. It was crawling on the sidewalk in true crustacean-fashion, looked about five or six inches long, and was a dark red/brown color. It looked like it had dirt on it, as if it had crawled up from a burrow. It was along Martin Luther King Jr. Drive at about 10th-15th avenues (not even near the beach!).

Was I witness to some kind of fluke a la the last scene of Magnolia? Did it escape from an Asian supermarket up the street? Was it someone’s lunch run away? Are there lobsters in Golden Gate Park?

Staci, the executive assistant to the general manager of the Recreation & Park Department, told me that she had never heard of any crustaceans roaming Golden Gate park in her 17 years working there.

“There aren’t even any Asian grocery stores near that area,” she said. “Maybe somebody came and tried to set one free!”

All joking aside (regarding this very serious topic), she mentioned that the questioner was jogging around the Japanese Tea Garden, so I called them to inquire further and finally talked to Deborah, a park gardener and the first person I spoke with who did not seem bewildered by my question.

“There are crawfish both in the tea garden pond and at Stow Lake,” she said. “I’m not sure where this particular crawfish came from, but I see them crawling around on pathways sometimes.”

Have you seen any other surprising creatures in an SF park? Let me know in the comments!

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