PORTLAND — Maine lobstermen who tied up for several days, hoping to push prices for their catch higher, are apparently heading back to sea.
“You’ve got to tend your traps,” said Brian McLain, a lobsterman from New Harbor who is on the board of the Maine Lobstermen’s Association.
McLain said the decision by some lobstermen to stay in port rather than fish apparently didn’t have any impact on prices. He said lobstermen are still getting only about $2 a pound for their catch, which is at record lows.
“I’m going to lose money today,” said McLain, who said that not only are prices low, but he isn’t catching that many lobsters today.
Lobstermen insist that they are not conducting a coordinated effort to tie up rather than go out and tend their traps. A joint decision to cut back on the catch would be a violation of federal anti-trust laws.
Lobstermen say a glut of lobsters has led prices to plummet. Many say that at the current prices, lobstermen can’t even cover their fuel and bait costs.