A new crab specimen discovered in the waters of Singapore was turned into an unusual gift last week for the Singaporean Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong. The “Indopinnixa Shellorum” is a new species of pea crab whose other cousins have been found only in Japan, Hong Kong and Lombok in Indonesia. To date, only seven species are known to science, including this latest discovery.
Shell created a model of this pea crab using 3D printing technology, amplifying its size multiple times in order to showcase it in a glass case. There were many reasons for presenting the gift: The crab was discovered in an inaugural government-led national marine biodiversity survey sponsored by Shell. And the specimen has been named after Shell (“Shellorum”) - to honour the men and women who work at Shell - as a result of the company’s support for the marine survey.
There was also the right occasion to gift: an award ceremony hosted by the Singapore government last Thursday honouring Shell’s longstanding contribution to the country’s economic and social growth made the gifting especially meaningful. The crab discovery has been made possible by community partnerships involving the National Parks Board, the Lee Kong Chian Natural History Museum (formerly Raffles Museum of Biodiversity and Research), and the Institute of Technical Education, which was responsible for printing the pea crab model with 3D technology.