MD Islander cites Wahle’s study in article on possible decline in lobster settlement

Mount Desert Islander cited the 2018 update of the American Lobster Settlement Index released by Rick Wahle, professor and director of the Lobster Institute at the University of Maine, in the article “Downturn in lobster numbers could be coming.” Studies of the settlement of post-larval baby lobsters at a variety of locations off the coast of New England “continued their string of well below-average numbers,” while numbers in Canada have been booming, according to the article. The lobster population could be moving north up the coast as the waters off the coast of Maine become warmer. For this year’s update, Wahle looked at settlement index numbers between 1988 and 2013 for a dozen sites along the coasts of Massachusetts, Maine and Canada, and prepared a “hindcast” to calculate what the landings volume would have predicted, the article states. The hindcast predictions closely mirrored actual landings trends. “In the end, the main goal of our research is to help stakeholders in the lobster fishery gain the lead time to make choices,” Wahle wrote.