Thursday, April 16, 2009

Fewer and Fewer Lobsters

Th commercial lobster catch in Connecticut was lower last year than at any time in the past 25 years (and therefore lower than at any time since the 1999 die-off). Here's a decent account from the Stamford Advocate.

It's hard to avoid the conclusion that Long Island Sound just isn't the ideal lobster habitat that it used to be, and that we'll never see a lobster industry like we used to have.



Anonymous Emmett Pepper said...

The Appropriations Committee approved $300,000 for the Lobster "v-notch" Restoration Program, which will hopefully be funded this year. Last year, the program had to utilize leftover funds from previous years, which have now run out. Getting the third year of the program is critical to its success.

7:26 PM  
Blogger Sam said...

I've been pondering this for a long time and keep on thinking this has something to do with water clarity. Back in the late 60s I distinctly remember being able to see about 12 feet into the water in Clinton, CT and about 25 feet into the water in Great Salt Pond, Block island. You could SEE lobsters crawling on the bottom, especially by the rocks! And there were plenty of lobsters - the trick was catching them.

Sounds pretty unscientific, I agree. This is perplexing to me because many scientists claim that turbidity has improved over the years, to the contrary. My hypothesis is that we've lost the wetlands and swamps to clean and filter the waters when mosquito control became a big deal - first drain the swamps and then landfill them for developments.

If my hypothesis is correct, the lobster population in Penobscott Bay, ME should crash in a few years because the turbidity there is becoming quite bad, and shell disease is already starting to show up in southern ME. Really, turbidity is just the condition of dense flora such as algae and the bacteria that feed on it.

1:11 PM  

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