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Maine Lobstermen Group Now Willing To Work With Feds To Protect Right Whales

A group representing Maine's lobstermen says it's now willing to work with the federal government on a plan to protect right whales after withdrawing its support for the plan this summer. And, see linked ASPN podcasts on the topic. (CNT View: Smart move. Now, get to work with NOAA and head to Canada hand-in-hand to address their contribution to the Right Whale mortality problem).

The Maine Lobstermen's Association is one of the key stakeholders in an effort to better protect the North Atlantic right whales, which number only about 400 and are vulnerable to entanglement in fishing gear. A federal plan that's being developed to help save the whales would remove miles of lobster trap rope from the waters off Maine.

The lobstermen's association issued a public statement on Oct. 11 saying it appreciates that the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's National Marine Fisheries Service has offered a "constructive response" to its concerns about whale protection.

However, the statement also says the lobstermen still think the whale plan focuses too much on new restrictions for their industry. The organization said it believes NOAA Fisheries should also consider the impact other fisheries have on the whales.

Read full article . . .

Listen to Dr. Michael Asaro, NOAA Lead on the Right Whale Take Reduction Team, Responds to Lobstermen Rejecting Right Whale Agreement

Listen also to Patrice McCarron, Maine Lobstermen's Association: Response to NOAA's Right Whale Rules. The Age of Anxiety has arrived.