DMR Seeks Industry Participants for Ventless Trap Program and Pilot Lobster Larvae Survey

Attention Industry Member,

Maine DMR is looking for industry participants for both the Regional Ventless Lobster Trap program and a National Sea Grant funded Pilot Lobster Larvae Survey.

Ventless Trap Program:

The Department of Marine Resources, in cooperation with the Gulf of Maine Lobster Foundation, seeks three industry participants for the Regional Ventless Trap Program through a competitive bid process. This is an opportunity to participate in a cooperative research project between industry and scientists from Maine through New York. Three of nine legs are open for bid, covering (1) Canadian Border - Addison, (2) N. Penobscot Bay, (3) Cape Elizabeth - NH Border. Each leg will have 80-100 small mesh traps rigged as triples randomly located at three depths. Sampling will take place during June, July and August 2021. Each trap will be baited and hauled twice each month on three night soaks making a total 3 day commitment each month. The lobster catch will be measured by a sea sampler and immediately returned to the ocean. All traps, line and buoys will be supplied to participating fishermen. Interested parties will need to complete the application to identify vessel specifications, daily rate and preferred sampling leg.

More information on the Program and the application process are available on the DMR website.

Lobster Larval Tows:

The Atlantic Offshore Lobstermen's Association (AOLA) and Maine Department of Marine Resources (DMR) are looking for two boats, one from eastern Maine (east of Winter Harbor) and one from the Midcoast Maine region, to complete weekly trips from early June until the end of September (14 days total per boat) in 2021. These trips will visit 3 stations each day along a transect from just outside the islands to 25 miles out and complete larval tows for lobster larvae and zooplankton.

The project plans to target sampling for the peak period when lobster larvae are expected to be present on the surface or in the water column. The projects objective is to determine the distribution and abundance of those larvae out to 25 miles. The project will provide the nets needed for sampling and the funding necessary to rig the boat with a horizontal boom to deploy the larval net alongside to avoid the bow wake. Selection of participant vessels will be at the discretion of DMR to best fit the needs of this project and may not be solely based on bid daily rates. Preference will be given to lobster license holders, but all interested parties are encouraged to apply.

More information on this research project and the bid process can be found on the DMR website.

Requests for Proposals on each project can be found at https://www.maine.gov/dmr/about/rfps.html