Maine lobsters are thriving, but regulators explore how to adapt to changing environments

BY OLIVIA MILTNER

The lobster industry along the New England coast is changing, and its two major lobster stocks are evolving in dramatically different directions. North of Cape Cod, lobster populations are booming, but in the south, the stock has greatly declined.

In Maine, where catches have reached record highs in recent years, optimism surrounding lobstering contrasts with attitudes farther south and with the New England fishing industry in general.

Still, the environmental factors impacting lobster have presented those involved with the industry, people who have historically valued being responsible stewards of the ocean, with the task of figuring out how to respond to changes that are largely out of their control.

“One of the biggest challenges and questions in fisheries management right now is how do we adapt to these changing conditions,” Megan Ware, American lobster fishery management plan coordinator for the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission (ASMFC), said.

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