The Antigua and Barbuda Fisheries Division have restricted the consumption, harvesting and any type of trading of Spiny Lobster.
The months of May and June are particularly important as the percentage of females mating or baring eggs usually peaks at about 80%. Depending on the size of the lobster, a female can produce between 250,000 and 1 million eggs. Although this number seems vast, the sad reality is that less than 1% reaches adulthood.
The lobster closed season starts on May 1 and remains until June 30 each year. During this period, people are not permitted to catch, sell, buy or keep any Caribbean Spiny Lobster.
At other times of the year, undersize lobsters, or lobsters with a body length of less than three ¾ inches or weighing less than 1 ½ pounds, must be tossed back into the sea undamaged.
The restrictions come under section 42 (6) of the Fisheries Regulations 2013. The regulations state that no person cannot fish, take, purchase or have any type of possession of Caribbean Spiny Lobster, also known as Panulirus Argus, during the closed season.
Any person who disobeys to the guidelines under section 42(6) will have to pay fines up to EC$50,000
Any type of violations can be reported to the fisheries division at 462-1372 or 462-6106 or by email <[email protected]>.
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