Scientists See Long-Term Hope for Maine’s Lobster Fishery Despite Warming Waters

Dire predictions about the effects of global warming on Maine’s lobster population may be exaggerated and underestimate the potential that conservation measures have to preserve the fishery into the future.

Rapid warming in the Gulf of Maine and the collapse of lobster fisheries in southern New England have fueled predictions that lobsters will likely move north out of Maine waters in the coming decades. But ongoing research at the University of Maine is revealing a more optimistic long-term view of the Maine lobster fishery.

The UMaine scientists are now projecting that temperatures in Gulf of Maine will likely remain within lobsters’ comfort zone because of the gulf’s unique oceanographic features, though changing ocean currents are harder to predict. The researchers cautioned that the dynamics of global warming are complex and make it difficult to project far into the future with certainty.

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