Maine Shrimp Season Begins Today
The northern pink shrimp season begins today and will continue without interruption through May 29, 2009. The 180-day season is 28 days longer than last year's, a signal that the resource is in good condition; it is the longest shrimp season since 1991.
The northern shrimp (Pandalus borealis) fishery is managed jointly by Maine, New Hampshire and Massachusetts through the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission. About 10.5 million pounds were landed during the 2008-09 season, according to ASMFC.
The Maine Department of Marine Resources says Maine fishermen landed about 7.3 million pounds of those shrimp, with an average boat price of about 39 cents per pound. Various reports place this year's boat price near the same level.
The shrimp season is a bright spot for Maine's struggling fishing industry as groundfish landings have plummeted and lobster prices are at historic lows. Still, one fisherman told the Portland Press Herald that few are excited.
"It's hard to live off 40 cents per pound," said Robert Tetrault II, skipper of a Portland-based trawler.