UPDATE: Lobster season delay for North shore zone

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Northumberland Strait zone will open as planned on Wed., April 30

Forecasts of windy weather will delay the start of the lobster season on the North Shore of Prince Edward Island and computer bureaucracy will delay licensing compliance, says the P.E.I. Fishermen’s Association.

The spring lobster season in the Northumberland Strait will open as planned on Wednesday, April 30 but North Shore fishermen will have to wait until May 1.

In the past, the first day was reserved for setting traps only, but in recent years regulations allow fishermen to haul in the first harvest on the same day the traps are set.

The opening day schedule was developed with telephone conference calls through the weekend and Monday with harbour representatives of the association and staff of Department of Fisheries and Oceans.

Strong-wind warnings from the northeast are in effect for Tuesday, April 29 for all marine areas around P.E.I., with winds dropping in the Gulf-Magdalen region only by Wednesday afteroon.

“It’s always safety first, that’s the main thing for us, to make sure it’s safe for the fishermen because the boats are loaded when they leave,” said Mike McGeoghegan, president of the association.

There are 385 lobster boats on the P.E.I. side of the Northumberland Strait zone known as 26A and 660 lobster boats on the North Shore in zone 24, he said.

“We are hoping for a good price this year. It’s pretty good on the mainland right now,” said McGeoghegan.

What is not so good is the new online lobster licence renewal system.

It used to be renewed by mail or with a personal visit to a regional licensing office, but this year it must be done online, he said.

All lobster fishermen received mail with a personal access code included.

Many didn’t realize the importance of the letters they got in the mail and mistakenly threw out the code, he said.

“If you don’t have the code, you don’t get the licence,” said McGeoghegan.

“Right now if you make two mistakes on the program it will shut you down for 24 hours,” he said.

“We can’t seem to get the coordination between Moncton and our office, in order to get the paperwork for the fishermen,” he said.

“I hope we can get this all settled before the season starts,” said McGeoghegan. “It should have been phased in over a three-year period.”

Organizations: Department of Fisheries and Oceans

Geographic location: P.E.I Fishermen

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Recent comments

  • bumper
    April 29, 2014 - 08:14

    Best of luck to all fisherman. If the season is good to you, it's good for all of us.

  • Lobster Guru
    April 29, 2014 - 01:38

    With the US dollar up,demand very still light Canner $ 3.00,Market $ 3.50 until Mother days then down about $ 0.20. Hope all have a safe setting day!

  • South sider
    April 28, 2014 - 23:41

    Isnt 26A a week later??

  • Lobster buyer
    April 28, 2014 - 19:15

    The price will be $3.15 -$3.25 for canners and $3.50 - $3.65 for markets. Wishing all the fishermen good fishing and a safe setting day.

  • An Islander
    April 28, 2014 - 18:39

    Here is to hoping for $3/LB prices again, never ate so much lobster as I did last year!

    • Nicolle Oomen
      April 29, 2014 - 05:44

      You obviously didn't pay a hired man, buy fuel for your boat, or bait for your traps either.

  • And?
    April 28, 2014 - 15:52

    and for us non-fishers, where are these areas?

  • 2nd class
    April 28, 2014 - 15:31

    Why send the south side out in a NE swell ,are our lives worth less !!!

    • North Sider
      April 29, 2014 - 07:45

      No they aren't but the South side voted to still set on Wednesday while the North side voted to wait because of the winds

    • 2nd class
      April 29, 2014 - 18:27

      I guess that is the difference ,I did not get a chance to vote !!!

    • Landlover
      April 29, 2014 - 22:30

      Be safe and wait for a calmer day! Not rock science decision.

  • Jimmy Buffet
    April 28, 2014 - 11:40

    No gear should go in the water until fishers know a price...end of .