(CMR) After being alerted of a Facebook post trying to sell lobster this morning Cayman Marl Road wishes to remind everyone of the importance of lobster season and respecting the dates.
The posted replied to people warning her it may be illegal by stating:
“1.I don't dive
2. I don't like seafood so don't care when it's open close bout to be bankrupt🤷♀️ so yeah I'm trying to just get it out my fridge so honestly don't care. if you feel so strongly about protecting them thats your opinion go sign up for the marine unit an help out im just humbly trying to sell it to get it out my fridge thank you”
Lobsters are widely fished around the world for their meat – seen as a delicacy to many. However, the many lobster populations worldwide including the Caribbean are dwindling in number and size. The possibility of exhausting the lobster supply is a real one and should be taken seriously.
Many jurisdictions have restrictions on lobsters during certain times of the year so that they can mate and replenish without being disturbed. Lobster conservation measures are key to their overall survival and should be respected.
The RCIPS issues an annual reminder of what lobster season opens and closes because it's a criminal offense to obtain lobster during the closed season:
The Royal Cayman Islands Police Service would like to remind the public of the following:
Conch and Whelks
The open season for conch and whelks officially began on November 1 and runs until April 30.
Conch may not be taken from any of the marine protected areas around the three islands, including the recently introduced Wildlife Interaction Zones.
The legal catch limit for conch taken from the open zones is five per person or 10 per boat, per day, whichever is less. Removing more than the prescribed limit is an offense.
Whelk catch limits: 2.5 gallons of whelk in shells or 2.5 pounds of whelk without shells per day
It is also against the law for anyone to receive or purchase more than five conchs taken from Cayman waters in any one day.
Lobster season opens on December 1 and runs until February 29.
The prescribed limit is 3 per person or 6 per boat, whichever is less. Exceeding this limit is an offense.
Lobster tails must be over 6 inches long
Lobster may not be taken from any of the marine protected areas around the three islands, including the recently introduced Wildlife Interaction Zones.
For more information visit http://doe.8m.com/ or call 949-8469.
Anyone with information about crime taking place in the Cayman Islands should contact their local police station or Crime Stoppers on 800-8477 (TIPS). All persons calling crime stoppers remain anonymous, and are eligible for a reward of up to $1000, should their information lead to an arrest or recovery of property/drugs.
UPDATE: August 25, 2018
The Department of Environment has launched an investigation into this matter now.
DOE Manager of Legislation Implementation and Coordination Unit John Bothwell congratulated the users on the self-policing.
“Most importantly is education, that the people who thought this was this was ok learned it’s not and going forwards would say ‘listen I will only take my lobsters during the season. That’s what the season is there for, so everybody can take some lobsters then and leave them alone now, particularly now… in the summer months,”
Mr. Bothwell said.
It is illegal for anyone to take, purchase, receive, or possess any quantity of lobster originating from Cayman's waters during the closed season.