Lobster lovers, beware. Time might be running out to enjoy Maine's most beloved crustaceans, and the culprit is global warming. A new study by scientists at the University of Maine has found that if ocean temperatures continue to rise at their current rate, lobster populations could be in trouble by the year 2100.
Published in the latest issue of the ICES Journal of Marine Science, the report claims that lobster larvae, under close evaluation, had difficulty surviving in water five degrees warmer than the current average temperature of the Gulf of Maine, where many of the state's large lobster population call home. The 3,000 baby lobsters studied appeared to develop faster in warmer waters, but had more difficulty surviving than their cooler water counterparts.
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The scientists conducting the study, from the university's Maine Darling Marine Center and Bigelow Laboratory for Ocean Sciences, raised the water temperature based on the UN's forecasts for the Gulf of Maine in 85 years.