PORTLAND — The New England shrimp fishing season is coming to an early end for the second straight year.

The season officially ends at 11:59 p.m. tonight. Regulators decided last week that fishermen were catching too many of the small, sweet crustaceans to keep the season open until April 15, as originally scheduled.

Found in the cold waters of the Gulf of Maine, northern shrimp provide a winter fishery for hundreds of fishermen. Boats from Maine catch about 90 percent of the annual harvest, with small numbers of boats from New Hampshire and Massachusetts catching the rest.

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