2012 lobster settlement numbers down throughout the Northeast

by Rick Wahle

 WALPOLE, ME – In a year that might be remembered as one that brought climate change home to many in the lobster industry, the 2012 ocean heat wave that broke all records and triggered an early shedder season did not seem to have a corresponding positive effect on lobster settlement.

[pullquote align=”left|center|right” textalign=”left|center|right” width=”30%”]In short, after a wave of widespread strong settlement years over the last decade, many locations were shown to be falling off the highs they had seen in the recent past.  [/pullquote]

While lobster larvae continued to settle mostly in the patterns we’ve seen before, young-of-year (YOY) lobster settlement in 2012 was down from the previous year in virtually all areas from Lobster Bay in Nova Scotia to Rhode Island. The striking contrast between the southern and northern regions evident a few years ago seems to be weakening.


Read the rest and much, much more in the June issue of Commercial Fisheries News. Read online immediately and download for future reference.