My daughter and I like to go crab hunting in rockpools. But we never keep them; how would we?
So, we could really use one or two of these extraordinary Edo period jizai okimono- which are articulated(!) metal figures.
Made by armour-making families steeped in centuries-old skill, this was their peace-time output.
Particularly amazing are the iron pieces, (definately the crab and the fish- I think the bugs may be copper alloy?) which were probably hot-forged, I'd imagine, (unless they are pure iron? which is much softer than modern mild steel) in any case, very skilled smithing here folks. And beautiful lustrous patina- also a japanese specialty.
at the Tokyo Museum ( why wasnt it on when I was there?!)
via Sushifactory's photostream, check out the rest. Blown away.