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Warming Waters, Female Lobster Movements, and Inshore Larval Recruitment


Discover how the inshore and offshore movements of female lobsters are affected by warming waters, and whether their young can settle and grow in shallow nursery habitats as coastal waters become warmer.

Project Period


Principal Investigator

Dr. Jason Goldstein

About the Project

The Gulf of Maine is warming faster than most waters around the world, but lobsters thrive in cold water. This has raised concern about the future of the Gulf's lobster fishery. Southern New England has already seen dramatic declines in lobster counts and the fishery there is in jeopardy.

Lobster abundance estimates are at an all-time high in the Gulf of Maine, but an all-time low in southern New England. Warming waters over the past 15 years have reduced the number of young lobsters found in nearshore nursery areas. The persistently low number of young lobsters in the population has managers concerned about sustaining the fishery.

This research will help lobstermen and fishery managers prepare for the uncertain future of the Gulf of Maine lobster industry.


Ocean Drifters

24 buoys were deployed of the coast to mimic the movements of lobster larvae during their planktonic stage.


University of New Hampshire, Saint Joseph’s College of Maine, New England Aquarium, Maine Department of Marine Resources, and New Hampshire Department of Fish and Game


Sea Grant American Lobster Initiative: $249,387

Read the Announcement

An early-stage lobster in the hand of Dr. Jason Goldstein. Wells, Maine. September 3, 2019.

An early-stage lobster in the hand of Dr. Jason Goldstein.

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