NEW LONDON CONN. (CBSNewYork) — Despite efforts to stop it, the lobster die off is continuing in Long Island Sound.
Just 15 years ago, the lobster catch in Long Island Sound was over three million pounds; last year, harvested lobsters weighed in at just over 120,000 pounds, WCBS 880s’ Connecticut Bureau Chief Fran Schneidau reported.
Fisheries biologist Mark Alexander says efforts to revive the population aren’t working.
“We have a trial survey that conducts sampling in Long Island Sound that’s continued to show further decline or depletion of the population. There are no signs of recovery there,” he said.
While most fishermen believe the lobster die-off is due to pesticide runoff in the sound, Alexander believes warming temperatures of the waters and the resulting low oxygen levels are to blame.
He says a three-month moratorium on lobster harvesting takes effect September 8.
In September 2013, Connecticut’s lobstermen braced for the start of the Long Island Sound fishery’s first-ever seasonal shutdown. The closure ran through the end of November 2013 in an attempt to give the sound’s depleted lobster population a chance to rebuild.
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