SAVE MAINE LOBSTERMEN
"New federal rules intended to protect the North Atlantic right whale have set a course to eliminate the Maine lobster fishery and end Maine’s lobster industry. And sadly, the plan won’t save the whales."
- Maine Lobstermens Association
"There has not been a single known right whale entanglement in Maine lobster gear in almost 20 years."
"Maine lobster gear has never been linked to a right whale death."
-Maine Lobstermens Association
1872 -Harvesting egg-bearing female lobsters was outlawed
1879 - Canning lobster during peak season became illegal
1895- Year-round minimum size limits were set, protecting juvenile lobsters until they reached maturity
1933 - A double gauge law was enacted to establish both a minimum and maximum size limit for catching lobster
1948 - The “V-Notch” law was put into effect where lobstermen would cut a notch on egg-bearing female lobsters to mark her as a good breeder
1995 - The ‘Zone Management’ law was passed, setting a statewide limit to the number of traps each license holder is allowed to fish
1997 - Removed all surface float rope from the water and weakened links to allow for right whales to break free in the event they come in contact with Maine gear
2009 - Replaced 27,000 miles of floating ground line with whale-safe sinking line
2015 - Required minimum traps per buoy line to reduce vertical lines in the water
2022 - Converted all gear to include weak links and weak rope
"Maine lobstermen have long prided themselves on their sustainability efforts, with self-imposed rules to protect the lobster resource and coastal environments in place since the 1800s. Lobstermen know that in order to preserve the fishery and their way of life, they must also protect the Gulf of Maine and the sea creatures who call it home. " - Lobsterfrommaine.com
REAL PEOPLE. REAL FAMILIES
"I consider us all stewards of our ocean, especially after many decades of working on the water and learning how to evolve our fishery to conserve the source and protect co-habitating species like the right whales," he said. “I take immense pride in the work our industry does to safely, sustainably harvest lobster, and I too want to protect our legacy and what we will be able to pass down to our children.”
-Sonny Beal, 46, Beals Island ME
"The fishery is my life. I live, breathe and sleep lobstering for my survival and for future generations to come"
-Dustin Delano, Friendship ME