ELLSWORTH — Lobstermen facing new fishing restrictions proposed by the multi-state Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission (ASMFC) met March 9 with Maine Department of Marine Resources (DMR) staff to hear details, ask questions and provide public comments.

The proposed changes are aimed at increasing the protection of lobster spawning stock, after a 2020 assessment in the Gulf of Maine and Georges Bank showed low numbers of lobsters in their first year of life, called “young of year.” Recruits, young lobsters 71-80 millimeters, are also in decline, DMR Director of External Affairs Megan Ware said.