Ban on Lobster Fishing to Save Whales in Maine

Last week the news came out that the ban on lobster fishing in Maine is off. The district court ruled that there was not enough evidence to support the case. The judge needed more proof that whales actually gather around this secured area. On Tuesday, the decision was changed to help the endangered North Atlantic right whales. Their numbers are believed to be less than 400. When you think about the ocean and how vast it is, and to only have 340 of these special whales in it, is truly heartbreaking.

The Maine Lobstering Union are not happy with the ruling as they rely on lobster to support their families. Most of them can’t afford the more expensive lobster traps that cost thousands of dollars. Instead, they use the cheaper alternative, which are vertical fishing lines. These traps cause a huge problem for the whales, who end up getting entangled in them. This is one of the reasons why so many fought hard to protect the area. Another reason is that whales get hurt being around fisherman, hitting their vessels.

The fisherman, on the other hand, are not happy with the ruling and are going to continue to fight it. For now, they need to remove all their traps from the protected 950 square mile area. Last year, the Maine lobster industry captured over $400 million worth of lobster. This restriction can affect their profits tremendously but it can also help the whales. There will be more lobster for the whales to consume and their environment won’t be disturbed.

What do you think about the ban on lobster fishing? Do you think it will help increase the North Atlantic right whales population? Or, do you think it will help reduce accidental whale deaths?

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