Lobsters to Become Scarcer

LobstaBad news for lobster lovers: Increasingly acidic oceans, thanks to absorbed CO2 from climate change, make juvenile lobsters grow and molt more slowly. That makes the animals more vulnerable to predation, and means URI researchers are predicting fewer adult lobsters being available for harvest.

URI doctoral student Erin McLean ’16 of Danvers, Mass., presented the findings at the annual meeting of the National Shellfisheries Association in Monterey, Calif., in April.

“I’m not sure yet what the mechanism is that is affecting their growth,” she says, “but it takes energy for them to regulate the increased acidity, which is energy they cannot then put toward growth.”