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Survey Of Lobster Traps

The below is a reproduction of an email received on 10/5/05 from Ed Parnell, Ph.D. at Scripps Institution of Oceanography.

We ran a survey for lobster trap floats off La Jolla and here are the results. We counted a total of 3,319 traps and here [below] is how they are distributed. Notice the traps tucked up against the edge of the reserve. A quick glance at this shows why there are so few legals left after only a few days! It takes an average lobster about 7 years to reach legal length and 5-6 years to reach maturity (considered about 2.5"). Imagine how many times these lobsters are trapped before they are finally taken. The lobster fishermen are basically feeding them for a few months of the year each season with their bait and reminding them where they're gonna end up!

We pulled up to a couple of fishermen and the general consensus was that this has been a disappointing opening day as the short to legal lobster ratio is high.

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