Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Empty Sound

I talked to a former lobsterman from Connecticut awhile back who had to sell his boat and find other work because there were too few lobster left in Long Island Sound.

He moved his big hands as he talked. The crows feet at his eyes had seen a lot of shadeless days on the seas.

There was no whining, no tears. There was just no more lobster.

The end to a livelihood, the end of his family's business. The collapse of an ecosystem.

He was convinced it was because of pesticides sprayed on land washed into the sound. The lobsters eggs, he said, were deformed by the poison. This is a guy who is attune to the marine world because it's where he grew up, where he lived and worked. He gets it.

A recent story in the New York Times cited other possible causes including climate change warming the waters around the lobster.

But there was this optimism from one of the lobstermen: "“Time will tell, you know. Right now, there are some small lobsters around. If everything goes right, they could bounce back. We’re pretty optimistic in this business.”

More on what happened to the lobsters.

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