Lobster catchers urged to stick to quotas

| 01/12/2019 | 18 Comments
Cayman News Service
Caribbean Spiny Lobster (Photo courtesy DoE)

(CNS): With the opening of the lobster season, the Department of Environment is urging the public not to exceed the daily catch limits or take what is still a threatened species from protected areas. The season lasts three months, from 1 December until 29 February, but there are strict rules about how many lobsters, and of what size, can be taken.

Lobster may only be taken from outside marine protected areas and only spiny lobsters (Panulirus argus) can be caught. Any lobster taken must have a minimum tail length of six inches and fisherfolk are limited to three spiny lobster per person per day, or six per boat per day, whichever is less.

Anyone who takes, purchases, receives or offers for sale, exchange or donation more than three lobsters per day from Cayman Islands waters commits an offence under the National Conservation Law, the DoE remineded everyone.

Visit the DoE website for more information on lobster season and other marine conservation measures.

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Category: Marine Environment, Science & Nature

Comments (18)

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  1. The reaper cometh says:

    Thanks for posting the limitations as I could have hedged a guess that the further east you go the quota goes up until you fill your boat in East End. No worries, slap on wrist, piddly fine, rinse and repeat till there’s nothing left.

  2. Anonymous says:

    Why not also try to help other countries maintain there environment by banning illegal (undersize lobsters) from being sold to Cayman. These lobsters are just a little bigger than shrimps. Shame on our government for allowing this to happen, just to collect duties.

  3. Anonymous says:

    Leviticus 11:9-10

  4. Anonymous says:

    “there are strict rules about how many lobsters, and of what size, can be taken”, in which case there should be no need to “urge” people to stick to quotas. If those strict rules are being enforced and communicated then no urging should be needed.

    • Anonymous says:

      Was out yesterday, no sign of any enforcement around.

      • Anonymous says:

        Then you needed to open your eyes bobo. I was stopped on the Wyndham beach by a very polite and professional conservation officer who not only enquired about my catch, but gave some very helpful safety advice and a leaflet dealing with the appropriate laws. I also saw two officers talking to people along Pease Bay on our way back to GT. I would agree that they are far too few, but that’s their management and CIG to put right.
        It’s all too easy to criticize those who do a difficult job with few resources and staff, perhaps if the self entitled attitude of a few was to decline, you wouldn’t need enforcement, just compliance.

        • Anonymous says:

          4:27 Thank you for defending them! 🙂 So many people are too quick to criticize the DOE and its officers. They are ding the best with the resources and the staff they have. If people want to see more of them installed we need to put pressure on upper government to allow the DOE to have more funding for more conservation job positions.

  5. Anonymous says:

    They should do what I understand happens in some parts of the USA. You get caught with undersized lobster on your boat you lose the boat. You get get caught towing the boat home they take the boat, the trailer and the vehicle. Guess what happens if you get the catch home?

    It’s known as ‘zero tolerance’ and the only way to deal with it is to take the things that make it possible away from the people doing it.

    Anyway, someone told me that most of lobster sold or served up on these islands is imported – where’s the incentive to poach it locally?

    • Anonymous says:

      While I vehemently disagree with zero tolerance policies (it would lead to people having property confiscated if say, a small lobster wondered into a trap and you were caught before you had chance to let it go) I agree that we need far more effective enforcement of our quotas. I would think that spreading enforcement out between DOE, RCIP and Coast Guard would be more effective than leaving it all to DOE.

      Perhaps our best options would be introduce a sustainable breeding/farming program

      • Anonymous says:

        10:44 Unfortunately lobsters are very difficult to farm due to there rather horrible habit of eating each other during development (they are basically cannibals). That’s why to farm them you would have to separate them from a young age which is very costly and labor intensive. Im not sure it would be profitable. What would stop or reduce poaching is if once the poachers are caught they are actually given jail time or heavy fines (or have there boats seized). DOE officers can catch them but its up to the court of law to actually punish them. If they get off scot free it doesn’t act as a big deterrent for them or other poachers.

      • Anonymous says:

        10:44 That’s a daft argument against zero tolerance. If the lobster goes into your trap and you release it back into the sea no laws have been broken so where’s the issue there? How long does that take? 30 seconds? The reality is the undersized lobsters end up with the rest and the boat owner tries to use that as a lame excuse, ‘Oh man, I was just going to put it back!’ which is complete BS.

      • Anonymous says:

        For heavens sake will you people read the damn National Conservation Law!
        The doe and police have the same enforcement powers under the law, its the police that refuse to enforce them. I hailed down a police car in EE last year and informed the officers that I strongly suspected conch/lobster poachers were operating at the rear of my property. The officers just weren’t interested and told me to call doe, despite being at the scene of a potential crime. The Coastguard will be just as disinterested as it will not be their sole responsibility or their sphere of expertise, no more than the police marine unit do now. The police have the extra powers of public order, but still fail to enforce them. Just look at Rum Point on a Sunday.
        And FYI, there already is a zero tolerance law which can seize boats, trucks etc if they are used in the commission of an offence. Again, read the NCL.

  6. Anonymous says:

    Why not just build a lobster farm on the Brac?

  7. Anonymous says:

    Why must DOE continue to strangle good and hard working Caymanian people who rely on the Sea for a living. These limits are a joke. Has anyone checked the boats coming from “Honduras” recently??

    • Anonymous says:

      If the “good and hard working Caymanian people who rely on the Sea for a living” are all allowed to take as many as they like as often as they like, there is likely to be none left, not even for the “good and hard working Caymanian people who rely on the Sea for a living”.

    • Anonymous says:

      you just made an argument for stricter enforcement.

      Congratulation, you played yourself.


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