Some lobsters get second chance

Sherry Martell
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Some lucky lobsters trapped on the last day of fishing season will live to swim again.

Kay Wallace, director of the Gulf Nova Scotia Bonafide Fisherman's Association, said the organization will purchase more than $240,000 worth of lobster from fishermen from Pictou to Aulds Cove and release them back into fishing grounds.

Some lucky lobsters trapped on the last day of fishing season will live to swim again.

Kay Wallace, director of the Gulf Nova Scotia Bonafide Fisherman's Association, said the organization will purchase more than $240,000 worth of lobster from fishermen from Pictou to Aulds Cove and release them back into fishing grounds.

"The effort behind this is we want to maintain a sustainable fishery," said Wallace.

"Science predicts 80 per cent of those lobster will spawn again and molt."

In areas where fishermen's individual lobster landings were more than 10,000 pounds, the association is willing to collect 200 pounds from each fisherman, one male for every five females of comparable size.

In areas where individual landings were below that amount, they will purchase up to 400 pounds from each fisherman.

"We're paying shore price," she said. Currently that amount is $6.75 per pound.

Two fishermen at each wharf have been appointed project leaders and will be prepared to issue payment when the lobsters are received.

At the end of the day, project leaders will sail out to their respective fishing grounds and deposit their load back into the Northumberland Strait.

The organization is using its snow crab fishery allocation to fund the program.

Wallace said overall at the majority of wharves from northern Nova Scotia to Pleasant Bay, lobster landings were down this year compared to 2006 totals but last year some had phenomenal catches, so it's an unrealistic comparison.

"It's been a poor season for weather and the lobster just don't move on days where there is an easterly wind," said the director.

Fishermen experienced easterly winds on 35 days during the two-month long season.

Geographic location: Gulf Nova Scotia Bonafide Fisherman, Northern Nova Scotia, Pleasant Bay

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