Lobster Condos, Lobster Habitats of the Bahamas!
Bahamian Lobster Habitats or Lobster condos! This is legal harvesting in the Bahamas. It is very sustainable. Crawfish (Caribbean Lobster) was almost extinct in the Bahamas. They need rocky or coral shelter for protection and the Bahamas have limited areas like this where they love to live and breed. Then some creative Bahamians figured out they could build a habitat for them, not a trap but a habitat. This is a 4′ x 8′ or 10′ foot wooden structure, lifted off the sea bed by about a foot. with openings on both sides. The crawfish or lobster come and go as they please, and live there, it is their habitat or home. The locals call it a lobster condo. Locals have built thousands of these as many as 20,000 all around the Bahamas. There are about 4-5 families mostly from Spanish Wells, and a few from the Abacos that have taken this real serious. Each family owns 2-3 thousand of these. They drop them, and mark them on GPS, so they are not visable from the surface, but if you look for them from the surface aboard your boat, you’ll see 4′ x 8′ foot shadows. Since these habitats have been built, the lobster have been thriving, and it has become very sustainable. There is a lobster season in the Bahamas and no one is allowed to take lobster even from their condos during this time (Lobster off season during August 1st to March 31st), this is breeding time! The harvesters come after lobster season to collect their harvest, they can get about 30-40 from each habitat. They always leave about 4 for further breeding. Then they can come again in 6 months before the season closes, and collect another harvest often smaller, but still leaving 4 in the condo. They also abide by the rules of not taking lobster that is too small. Most of the harvest, almost a million lobster is sent to the USA each year, Red Lobster that is! Yes, Red Lobster displays its North Atlantic lobster, but serves you a Bahamian lobster tail, unless you buy a North Atlantic lobster from their tank. In addition, if you see one of these habitats, feel free to dive down and take one or two. Bahamian law states, that anything on the sea floor doesn’t belong to anyone. This is why they don’t mark them with floats, but on their GPS. There are actual Lobster Pirate wars on the high seas, Pirates come raid the condos and move them, and mark a new GPS point, thereby the original owner can’t find his condo any more. There have been gun battles over this. Mostly the Dominicans coming and fishing illegally in Bahamian waters!