Tag Archives: lobster

Prince Edward Island lobstermen struggle through uncertain 2020 season

The fishing industry has certainly hit rough waters in the past, but the 2020 season was like few had ever seen,,, There is little doubt pandemic woes played a partial role in the fact lobster catches were down approximately 8.6 per cent compared to 2019, which was a record year. As Charlie McGeoghegan, chair of the PEI Lobster Marketing Board, puts it, much of the reason for that decrease was due to the fact the spring season was delayed two weeks. Fish plants had issues with getting out-of-province workers in due to border restrictions and self-isolation policies. >click to read< 09:55

Fishermen, DMR: New North Atlantic Right Whale regulations could cripple lobster industry

The proposal, released in late December 2020, includes measures like regional gear marking, breakaway rope, extra traps per trawl line and restrictions on certain fishing areas. But it is the emphasis placed on ropeless fishing traps that has officials at the Maine Department of Marine Resources most concerned. In its Biological Opinion regarding right whales and the fishing industry, NMFS identifies ropeless fishing as a solution, among others, to reduce whale entanglements that cause death or serious injury. DMR argues that ropeless gear is largely under-researched and unaffordable. DMR used EdgeTech traps to estimate cost increases associated with converting to ropeless fishing,,, An EdgeTech fishing unit costs $3,750,  >click to read< 19:36

Right whale protection regs leave Cape fishermen feeling trapped

His house on the quarter-acre lot is nearly surrounded by gravel, with bright yellow and black fishing traps neatly stacked all around. Tolley is gearing up for the fishing season, is headed for a hip replacement in a month, but that wasn’t his only concern. New state regs require that he fit the buoy lines on all 1,200 of his lobster, conch and black sea bass traps with special sleeves that release under the pressure of an adult whale. “I don’t want to see a right whale entangled,”,,, He worries about the financial pressures imposed on him and other fishermen by regulations >click to read< 13:42

Direct to the consumer – ‘We grew about 600% in 2020’: Get Maine Lobster CEO & Founder Mark Murrell

The lobster business is one industry that has really seen a jump in sales during the pandemic. Initially, it took a hit right after the COVID outbreak happened here in the US, but here to talk a little bit more about this, we want to bring in Mark Murrell. “We grew about 600% in 2020. I would attribute that to people trying to find normalcy. Their favorite restaurant is closed. They aren’t going out. They aren’t traveling. They want to do something fun. And there’s nothing like being adventurous in the kitchen. So why not fly in some live lobster? video,>click to read< 09:05

Lobstermen say proposed Right Whale rules are expensive, dangerous, and based on outdated data

During the final public hearings, Maine Department of Marine Resource Commissioner Patrick Keliher echoed a statement put out by Gov. Janet Mills earlier that week stating that “a one-size-fits-all approach in the state of Maine will not work.” Fishermen and environmentalists voiced concerns over the science federal regulators were using to make decisions, including the number of right whales alive today, how many have been harmed by entanglements or struck by ships and the effectiveness of proposed gear changes.  “We all agree on one thing,” said Matt Gilley, a Harpswell lobsterman who spoke up at the virtual meeting. “That is that the data is flawed. In what direction, that remains to be seen.” >click to read< 11:10

Crown-Indigenous Relations should take the lead on the Nova Scotia lobster dispute, pointing to DFO’s lost credibility.

The Liberal government’s “new path” that has been broadly rejected by Atlantic First Nations is an “interim measure,” says Liberal MP Jaime Battiste, to address moderate livelihood fishing,,, Mr. Battiste (Sydney-Victoria, N.S.) is one of three Mi’kmaw Parliamentarians, who together offered solutions to the conflict that has persisted since September,,, For Mr. d’Entremont, part of the problem, though, is that the matter has become an Indigenous relations issue, because of the longstanding problem with DFO’s approach, and lack of enforcement. “We’ve gotten too far into Indigenous rights and what an agreement, or a treaty back in [1760] told us. It’s hard to apply it to today’s economy, in today’s fishing industry, and I don’t know how to fix that,” he said. Mr. d’Entremont acknowledged it’s a perspective that would make some “very mad.” “I recognize the right, but I understand the right can be regulated,” he said. >click to read< 18:00

Massachusetts Lobstermen fear end of their livelihood

Dan Pronk is worried a new set of proposed NOAA and NMFS restrictions aimed at saving the North Atlantic right whale could be the nail in the coffin for the lobstering industry on Nantucket. “We’ve got five years left of lobstering down here,” said Pronk, the only commercial lobsterman on Nantucket, and one of only a handful of lobstermen around the region with traps south of Nantucket and Martha’s Vineyard. “It’s career ending if they get their way. We’re bending over backwards to appease these people. >click to read< 13:28

Tasmania: Seafood, rock lobster industry receives state government relief package

Hundreds of struggling fishers, who have been hard hit in recent months, have received a much-needed cash relief. The state government announced a fee relief package of $663,000 for rock lobster and other commercial wild fishers. Tasmanian Seafood Industry Council’s chief executive Julian Harrington said the seafood industry, even more so, the rock lobster industry, were still recovering from the impacts of Coronavirus. “Cash flow margins for fishermen are very narrow and any financial support and fee relief is welcomed.” >click to read< 13:26

“Networks”: A rare, real look at the lives of lobstermen

“That funny looking water’s moving closer, Brooke,” Wallace says, motioning off in the nearby distance with his head as his hands work on the mooring. “That’s awful funny looking.” “Networks” is Mohnkern’s first film, and it tells a tightly focused story of a group of lobstermen from the Phippsburg village of West Point who hope to catch the shiny, surface-breaking fish known as pogies, or menhaden, causing all the ruckus in the water. It’s a story for the ages, men chasing fish and the consequences of their quest. But in just a few minutes, Mohnkern also manages to tell a story of a community of fishermen coming together for their common good and spotlights the economic impact of the migratory patterns of baitfish. >click to read< 09:32

Feds say all fisheries must operate within the commercial season. Mike Sack says ‘not going to happen’

Fisheries Minister Bernadette Jordan said in a statement on Wednesday that Ottawa will not issue licenses to fisheries that operate outside the federal commercial season. Last fall, the Sipekne’katik First Nation in Nova Scotia launched its own self regulated, rights based lobster fishery outside the federal fishing season, sparking a violent backlash from commercial fishers. Sack says the federal government has no right to impose its rules and regulations on the Mi’kmaw, and that Sipekne’katik’s fishery will be back this year — bigger and better than ever. >click to read< 07:51

Fisheries Minister Jordan: A new path for First Nations to fish in pursuit of a moderate livelihood

We have never stopped working with First Nations to reach agreements and implement their right to a moderate livelihood. That is why effective this season, we will introduce a new path for First Nations to fish in pursuit of a moderate livelihood, one that addresses much of the feedback we’ve heard over the past year. This plan will support individuals, their families, and their communities. It’s a path that is flexible, adaptable, and based on three key principles: implementation of First Nations Treaty rights, conservation and sustainability of fish stocks, and transparent and stable management of the fishery. >click to read< 21:53

Enviros and lobster fishermen are unhappy with proposed federal regulations to protect right whales

In a public hearing Tuesday night, conservationists and fishermen alike roundly criticized federal regulators’ proposed changes in fishing rules to protect endangered whales from fishing gear. Much of the discussion focused on so-called ropeless lobster fishing technology, which allows traps to be located and retrieved using remote-control systems. Conservationists see that as the ultimate solution, But many Maine fishermen scoff at the idea, and Marine Resources Commissioner Patrick Keliher agreed it’s not practical for Maine’s diverse fishing grounds. >click to read< 15:33

U.S. lobster exports to China rebounded in 2020

While the coronavirus pandemic tanked U.S. lobster exports overall in 2020, international trade data suggests the industry’s once-thriving U.S. to China trade pipeline may be making a comeback.  International sales of U.S. lobster fell by 22 percent last year, from $548.4 million in 2019 to $426.9 million in 2020. The market saw declines in sales to each of the country’s top 10 international buyers, with the notable exception of China, which bought more than $127 million of U.S. lobster, or a roughly 49 percent increase over 2019, according to the U.S. Census Bureau. >click to read< 10:34

P.E.I. lobster fishermen want exemption from new gear rule aimed at protecting whales

Island lobster fishermen should be be exempt from using gear designed to break free in the event of a whale entanglement, according to the P.E.I. Fishermen’s Association (PEIFA). The PEIFA wrote a letter to the Department of Fisheries and Oceans (DFO) to request lobster fishermen be exempt from new rules, which are expected to become mandatory by the end of 2022. The group says sighting data shows the endangered North Atlantic right whale is rarely in P.E.I. lobster fishing grounds. >click to read< 10:46

Coronavirus: Why the Lunar New Year matters for Maine lobster shippers

The Lunar New Year is typically one of the busiest parts of the calendar for America’s lobster shippers, who send millions of dollars worth of the crustaceans to China every year. This year the holiday is Friday, and industry members said the Year of the Ox won’t necessarily be the Year of the Lobster. That’s because shipping has been complicated this winter by the threat of the virus. Mike Marceau, vice president of The Lobster Company in Arundel, Maine, said he isn’t expecting much in the way of exports. >click to read< 08:44

Maine lobsterman catches 1 in 30 million yellow lobster named Banana, and donates it to UNE

A Maine lobsterman caught a rare one in 30 million yellow lobster and donated it to the University of New England. Tenants Harbor lobsterman Marley Babb caught the lobster and reached out to the university after first contacting the Maine Department of Marine Resources. The Department of Marine Resources’ Jessica Waller is working on a lobster research project with UNE’s Markus Frederich. She contacted him and asked whether UNE might be interested in housing the lobster. >click to read< 20:13

Lobster spaghetti is not just for special occasions

The once-standard summer fare has morphed into a celebratory treat. But why limit lobster to special occasions or a specific time of year? This is a recipe for any time. It’s understated and comforting, yet carries the swag of fresh-cooked lobster meat. If you prefer not to use lobster meat, shrimp are an excellent alternative, and they will bump this recipe onto your roster of easy weeknight meals. When using shrimp, simply saute them in olive oil with a pinch of salt before adding them to the dish. recipe, >click to read< 10:10

Lobstermen react to proposed NOAA rule

A Jan. 20 public meeting on the latest proposal to reduce the risk of whale entanglements in fishing lines focused on northern and eastern Maine lobster fishing. At this latest meeting, local lobstermen echoed similar concerns they aired when discussions started two years ago: NOAA is relying on incomplete and outdated data, and fishermen are not seeing right whales in Maine waters. NOAA scientists agree that more data would be useful. >click to read< 08:19

Premium Brands and Mi’kmaq First Nations Coalition Announce Acquisition Completion of Clearwater Seafoods Inc.

“We are very excited to have a world class seafood company like Clearwater join our ecosystem.,,, said George Paleologou, President and CEO of Premium Brands. “We are also very pleased to be partnering with the Membertou, Miawpukek, Sipekne’katik, We’koqma’q, Potlotek, Pictou Landing and Paqtnkek communities. “This is a significant achievement for the Mi’kmaq,” said Chief Terry Paul, Membertou First Nation. “Mi’kmaq not only become 50% owners of the company but expect to hold Clearwater’s Canadian fishing licences within a fully Mi’kmaq owned partnership. >click to read< 09:23

China’s lobster ban helped lift Australian Christmas seafood purchases by 30 per cent

It was a difficult 2020 for Australian fishermen with COVID-19 affecting both food service and export markets. “We needed a bumper Christmas period to help us claw our way back,” Veronica Papacosta, CEO of Seafood Industry Australia (SIA) said. It seems that SIA’s campaign calling on consumers to support the struggling sector, by switching one meal on the Christmas table to seafood, worked. “We’re hearing from retailers and producers right across the country that they’re up, on average, 30 per cent from last year’s December sales,” >click to read< 07:49

Safety on the Water Must Take Precedent

The year 2020 is nearly in the rearview mirror. Feel free to take a moment and let out a collective sigh of relief here. Who knows what 2021 has in store for us, but could it possibly be any more strange, troubling or unprecedented than the last 12 months? This past year will go down in history as one of the most turbulent for the fishery in Southwest Nova Scotia. Not only was the industry rocked by the global impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic, but the self-regulated, moderate livelihood lobster fishery by First Nations led to protests, disputes and dissention across the breadth of the Nova Scotia fishing community. >click to read< 08:45

New Zealand crayfish in hot demand in China, selling for $100, as China-Australia relations sour

Though this time of year is usually quiet a shift in global politics has made for a busier November and December than expected. A diplomatic stoush saw China refuse various Australian exports, including live crayfish, also known as kōura or rock lobster. Suddenly Chinese buyers are paying a lot more to get hold of New Zealand crays. The extra cash has been a welcome boost, after the industry’s $38m loss during lockdown. >click to read< 16:43

Australian Lobster Sector Claws Back Trade After China Ban

Australia’s rock lobster exports are worth half a billion US dollars a year — and in normal times, 94 percent of them go to China. But all that changed a few weeks ago, when Beijing imposed a near-total import ban on lobster, part of a broader politically charged “shadow trade war”. “It has affected us drastically,” third-generation fisherman Fedele Camarda told AFP. “Our income has been reduced considerably.”,,,  local authorities recently changed legislation to allow commercial rock lobster fishers to sell large quantities from the back of their boats,,, >click to read< 10:40

RCMP Investigates – Pictou Landing chief says lobster fisher was shot at on the water

RCMP in Pictou County, N.S. have one person in custody after reports of shots fired Sunday in the area of Pictou Landing First Nation. RCMP spokesperson Cpl. Lisa Croteau said RCMP responded to the incident around 5:30 p.m. She said she could not provide an exact location of the incident, only that it was “in the Pictou Landing area.” Croteau said no injuries have been reported and a police investigation is ongoing. >click to read< 06:30

Western rock lobster head to supermarkets across Australia amid China trade woes

It is a deal that would have been unimaginable last Christmas, when Chinese customers were snapping up western rock lobster at jaw-dropping prices and locals in the port city of Geraldton, where they were caught, often missed out. But the fishers’ co-operative has now signed a contract with a supermarket giant to put the prized shellfish on retail shelves across Australia at the relative bargain price of $20 each for a cooked lobster. The coronavirus pandemic and worsening trade crisis with China has seen rock lobster fishers focus on the market closer to home. Video, >click to read< 11:05

Sipekne’katik First Nation Chief frustrated, ceases lobster fishery talks with feds

In a letter sent Wednesday to Fisheries Minister Bernadette Jordan, Sipekne’katik Chief Mike Sack says the department has neither the “desire nor the ability” to recognize and implement the Mi’kmaq band’s constitutionally protected treaty right to fish. Sack expresses frustration with the nation-to-nation discussions and says Ottawa has tried to lump his band’s treaty rights in with regulation of commercial licenses. A spokesperson in the minister’s office was not immediately available for comment. >click to read< 14:31

Opinion: The Reason for No Season – Jim O’Connell

These are 2 females. The black shelled female on the left did not shed this year for the first time skipping the yearly shed. It now has eggs. It was a pound and a half and does not have to shed every year anymore.,,, Canada is not protecting the reproductive potential with it’s seasonal rules. They force the lobstermen to throw the baby out with the bath water. Lobstermen who are trying to make a living for the whole year in two months are targeted on the most important lobster for reproduction.,,, The First Nations have publicly come out and said they want to improve the regulations on the present method for sustainability. Jim O’Connell, >click to read< 15:36

Lobsters to be given away to Mainers in Need Christmas Eve

Nothing says Maine generosity quite like giving away lobsters to those in need. And on Christmas Eve, no less. Local lobsterman, Noah Ames, and his family have been giving away lobster to those in need in the past and now, in the dumpster fire that is 2020, they’re not stopping as the need for food assistance is greater than ever. >click to read< with a message and details from Noah Ames! Merry Christmas!

Delay, Delay, Delay. No Dec. 7 start to LFA 34 commercial lobster season off southwestern N.S.

While there had been a weather window for a possible start to the LFA 34 commercial lobster season later in the day on Monday, Dec. 7, it’s been decided that window wasn’t ideal enough to get things underway, and so the season start has seen another delay. The plan as of Monday morning was now for a conference call at 4 p.m. to discuss a possible Tuesday, Dec. 8 opening. A time of 4 a.m. for a Tuesday opening is being looked at it. The season had originally been slated to start on Nov. 30. >click to read< 12:09

Dec. 7 dumping day on standby off southwestern N.S. – Captains and crews should be prepared to leave

The start of the LFA 34 commercial lobster season off southwestern N.S. remained on standby on Sunday evening, Dec. 6, following a late afternoon industry conference call. But there was a weather window being eyed for Monday, Dec. 7 for the season to possibly start anytime after 10 a.m.,, “If the call (Monday) morning gives the okay, there will be a delayed start, anytime after 10 a.m. Captains and crews should be prepared to leave late morning at the earliest on Monday, Dec. 7.” photos, >click to read< 16:52