August 2, 2013
Maine Coastline Near Bar Harbor
Why is it that nearly all the old photos I'm digging up these days seem to fall under the heading of Dangerous Waters?
Was reminded of Bar Harbor, more specifically its many restaurants serving local lobster, by the "Attack of the Cannibal Lobsters" video making the rounds these days, about some of the effects of the lobster population boom off the Maine Coast.
The report conflates the economic misfortune visited upon the Maine lobster industry by the population boom, resulting most likely from over-fishing of the young lobster's natural predators, with the more serious threat to the lobster population of shell diseases, suspected to be fostered by rising water temperatures.
Lobster cannibalism is a natural corrective to over-population, just as lobstermen driven out of business by low lobster prices is a market corrective to those very same low prices. In neither case will my appetite for lobster suffer.
Shell disease, though, that is worrying. Unfortunately, the video report has little to say about it.
Best lobster I ever had, I had in Bar Harbor, pulling in late evening from a misconceived late-October New England car camping trip. (A oil-leaking, gas-leaking VW station wagon, its frame "flexible" with rust.) As I remember it, eating that lobster in Bar Harbor, saturated in butter, was the only time I was warm on that trip.