Climate Change is Threatening Maine’s Lobsters

© Con Poulos

By Adam Campbell-Schmitt Posted February 18, 2016

Just a short while ago, they were super-abundant.

If you notice lobster's price rising on menus, don't be surprised. According to the Washington Post, the lobster populations are in decline and the culprit is climate change. The issue is warming water, which isn't so harmful to the lobsters as it is beneficial to diseases that affect the crustaceans. This effects all kinds of sea life, especially starfish: They're apparently turning into goo, and one Pacific Northwest species has vanished. Granted, we don't usually eat sea stars: perhaps, now that the problem affects our surf-and-turf plates, we'll get more serious about finding a solution.

Since the 1990s, scientists have observed lobsters in Long Island Sound suffering from an increasing number of shell lesions that make them unfit for eating (it they survive at all). Female lobsters are more likely to perish, since they molt less frequently. Lobster fishing hauls are already down in southern New England, and scientists say Maine is on the same trajectory. It would be a shame to see lobster leave the menu, considering just a short while ago they were so abundant as to be served as prison food.

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