Former NOAA Official's Call To Save Whales Irks Lobstermen

Lobster Season ( Credit: Shanul/Getty-Images Royalty Free)

GLOUCESTER, Mass. (AP) - A letter from a retired fisheries official calling for the lobster fishing industry to take the lead on saving right whales has irked some members of the lobstering industry.

The letter from former National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration regional administrator John Bullard appeared in the Boston Globe on Monday. 

Bullard, who retired in January, wrote lobstermen "know best how to save whales" and need to be open to new restrictions aimed at saving them.

The Gloucester Times reports some lobstermen think Bullard's op-ed unfairly singled the industry out. Massachusetts Lobstermen's Association executive director Beth Casoni says her industry's "continually in the cross-hairs" because of the whale crisis.

North Atlantic right whales number only about 450 and are in the midst of a year-long stretch of high mortality and low reproduction.

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