Tag Archives: lobster

Fisheries and Oceans Canada held Lobster Science Partnership Roundtable

On June 15, Fisheries and Oceans Canada held a Lobster Science Partnership Roundtable to discuss important lobster science questions and research priorities. Thank you to the more than 40 participants, including Indigenous partners, commercial fishing representatives, other key researchers and Fisheries and Oceans Canada scientists, for their invaluable contribution to the conversation on the work that needs to be done to chart a common course for lobster science. For further information, >click to read< 08:53

Maine’s having a lobster boom. A bust may be coming.

The waters off Maine’s coast are warming, and no one knows what that’s going to mean for the state’s half-billion-dollar-a-year lobster industry, the largest single-species fishery in North America. Some fear that continued warming could cause the lobster population to collapse. The Gulf of Maine, an ocean body brimming with marine life, is cradled by Cape Cod in the south and the Bay of Fundy in the north, and bounded in the east by two underwater shoals, George’s Bank and Brown’s Bank. In 2015, climate scientist Andy Pershing, formerly of the Portland-based nonprofit Gulf of Maine Research Institute, published a paper in Science concluding that the gulf was warming faster than “99% of the global ocean.” That eye-popping revelation was enough to keep fisheries managers and a whole lot of Mainers awake at night. >click to read< 16:27

Lobster prices are through the roof!

As the country reopens post-pandemic, increased demand for lobster and a squeezed supply caused by a state ban on lobstering to protect right whales has resulted in a price spike of about 60% per live lobster. “If there’s no lobsters coming in, then the demand isn’t being met. Those are the cards,” said South Shore Lobsterman Association President John Haverland. According to business publisher Urner Barry, the retail price of a live, one-and-a-half-pound lobster increased from $5.47 a year ago to $9.05 on June 7 this year. >click to read< 08:41

Lobster wars: Norfolk fisherman says too many people cashing in, lobsters being overfished

A Norfolk fisherman with more than 40 years of experience has raised fears that the region’s shores are being overfished of lobsters. David Chambers said bad weather had recently affected lobster supplies. But Mr Chambers also blamed too many people coming into the industry and crowding the waters with their pots on the decline in lobster supplies and the hike in prices. It comes as the seabed from Weybourne to Happisburgh, off the Norfolk coast, was designated a Marine Conservation Zone in 2016.”There are an awful lot of pots and I know some people with big boats who are giving up because there’s too much gear out there, the younger fishermen have no respect, it’s just crazy. >click to read< 11:39

Fire it up! Can Lobsters Get High? A team of scientists tested one restaurateur’s theory

A team of scientists at the University of California San Diego have written a paper in pre-print (meaning the work has not been published or peer reviewed yet), which looks at the effects of THC, the main compound in cannabis that gets you high, on lobsters. The scientists devoted their research hours to these questions in response to a 2018 media storm, started by restaurateur Charlotte Gill. At the time, Gill, owner of Charlotte’s Legendary Lobster Pound in Southwest Harbor, Maine, wanted to find a way to cook her lobsters more humanely. So can lobsters get high? >click to read< 10:52

P.E.I. lobster falls by $2 a pound

Earlier this month, fishers were selling their catches for around $8 for canners and $8.50 for markets, the highest prices in about 15 years. Charlie McGeoghegan, chair of the Lobster Marketing Board of P.E.I., said the price went as high as $8.50 a pound for canners and $9.00 for markets. Now those prices have dropped. “We were glad to see that first week, the price where it was. To our disappointment though, the Monday after Mother’s Day, they dropped it in a lot of cases [by] two dollars a pound,”,, >click to read< 17:14

Mothers Day: A salute to marine mothers, from lobsters to octopus

What makes the she lobster so contemporary is that she goes looking for her mate by tapping and poking the tips of her claws into the male abode, and if she finds the lucky catch, she enters, whereupon the male taps his claws as a welcoming gesture (she hopes). This behaviour is known as “boxing.” It is thought the future husband actually taps her to get a sense of the hardness of her shell and when she may molt, because when she does, the matrimonial action occurs! She will then lie on her back while the male performs his magnificent gesture. >click to read< 12:01

A “heavy mental impact” – Tasmania’s rock lobster industry suffers in trade war

Beijing cancelled the China Australia strategic economic dialogue this week, effectively ending trade relations between the two countries. For Tasmania’s rock lobster fishers this trade war is real and destroying their livelihoods and businesses in less than 12 months. Lobster fisher Kane Ebel said there was a “heavy mental impact” to the trade war. “When you get out of bed in the morning and you’ve got big debts on your boat and your house and effectively can’t go to work, it’s got to take a toll,” he told Sky News. >click to watch< 18:48

New buoy marking changes in the works for Bay State Lobstermen

In late January, the Massachusetts Fisheries Advisory Commission approved a package of new protections for the imperiled North Atlantic right whales, including an extended state-water closure, required breakaway ropes and new rules for applying identifying markings on lobster trap buoy lines. The new gear requirements went into effect May 1, but commercial lobstermen may not want to get too comfortable with the buoy line marking rules. DMF already is looking to change them after this fishing season. The proposed new buoy line marking rules, if enacted, would go into effect Feb. 1, 2022. >click to read< 14:28

Video: Spring lobster season officially underway on P.E.I.

The spring lobster season on P.E.I. officially got underway Tuesday after a four-day delay due to weather. Boats in Lobster Fishing Area 26A, the southeast, left at 6 a.m. while those in LFA 24, on the North Shore, started at 9 a.m. Many fishing captains hire extra help on setting day, when the boats are loaded with traps. They will begin pulling the traps on Wednesday. Erin Bagloe, who fishes out of Red Head Harbour, said he prefers to get going at 6 a.m. but agreed with the decision to delay.  Video, >click to read< 15:55

The lobster population in Canada’s most important harvesting area is healthy and is not overfished

The 20,000-square-kilometre fishing ground off southwestern Nova Scotia and into the Bay of Fundy, known as Lobster Fishing Area 34, accounts for 20 per cent of all lobster landed in Canada and 10 per cent of North American landings. “The stock is considered to be in the healthy zone. Furthermore, as the relative fishing mortality is below the removal indicator in all four survey indices, overfishing is not occurring,” the report concluded. The latest assessment, which ended in 2019, used commercial landings and several independent trawl surveys to evaluate the stock status. >click to read< 09:50

Ottawa, Mi’kmaq community on collision course over plan for second lobster season

The federal fisheries minister said today that enforcement officers will be in place in St. Mary’s Bay to “uphold the Fisheries Act” if Sipekne’katik fishers harvest lobster beginning on June 1. Bernadette Jordan’s comment came shortly before Chief Mike Sack held a news conference to say his band will operate a five-month season that will occur outside of the commercial season. Sack says the plan envisions 15 to 20 boats setting 1,500 traps, with a midsummer closure during the moulting and reproduction season and its own enforcement officials. >click to read< 14:18

Alliance Rubber Company announces the launch of the Seafood Banding Machine for lobster and oysters

The Seafood Banding Machine was created to decrease the pain associated with manual banding, but these machines also increase efficiency and lower overhead costs in oyster and lobster processing.,, Captain Martin Collins of a lobster fishing vessel in LFA 35, tested the bander on his vessel. According to Collins, “I normally rely on two guys to band the catches each season, but this time around they couldn’t make it. I had to hire a green bander at the last minute, who suffered from two torn rotator cuffs. To my surprise, this 55 year-old guy who couldn’t lift the traps, was able to process 15,000 lbs. of lobster on this machine without any issues what so ever. If it weren’t for this machine, I wouldn’t have made it through the season.” >click to read< Watch a demo of the Lobster Banding Machine, >click to read/watch, more info< 07:47

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