Worst Maine Shrimp Season Since Late ’70s

The Gulf of Maine shrimp fishing season ends just before midnight tonight with this year’s harvest being the smallest since 1978. Less than 700,000 pounds of so-called Maine shrimp (Pandalus borealis) have been landed this year (the season opened on Januray 23rd this year) compared with 5.3 million pounds last year and over 13 million pounds in 2011. Some fisheries biologists hypothesize warm ocean temperatures are responsible for reduced stock in the Gulf of Maine, and based on their stock projections, fisheries managers reduced the total allowable catch this year to 1.38 million pounds (down from 5.3 million pounds in 2012). Many fishers say the shrimp fishery in the Gulf of Maine is always cyclical.

About Ret Talbot

Ret Talbot is a freelance writer who covers fisheries at the intersection of science and sustainability. His work has appeared in publications such as National Geographic, Mongabay, Discover Magazine, Ocean Geographic and Coral Magazine. He lives on the coast of Maine with his wife, scientific illustrator Karen Talbot.
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