Where do the lobster larvae in S. Cal come from - "Answer" from DFW


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Nov 30, 2010
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Kristine Barsky is a Senior Invertibrate Biologist for the DFW in CA

View attachment 78813

Saxon, Andy M.D.
Sent: Saturday, November 02, 2013 11:01 PM
To: Barsky, Kristine@Wildlife
Subject: Lobster recruitment question.

Kristy: Where do most of the lobster’s that live in the Catalina to Santa Rosa plus the coast “come from”. Is the larvae/recruitment mainly locally produced or does in come from “distance?” Since the local current is the CA current from up north where there aren’t a lot of lobsters, I assume most recruitment is local but others have told me it might come up from the South/Mexico.

Any enlightenment would be appreciated.

Andy Saxon


Dear Andy,

There is not a definitive answer to your question, primarily because the larvae spend 9 to 11 months in the open ocean. Many lobster scientists believe that larvae from south of the border provide a portion of the recruitment in southern California (the percentage is hotly debated). I agree with you, that the further north you go the more likely that recruitment is local, especially given the circular current pattern in the Santa Barbara Channel. What is needed is a series of puerulus collectors along the coast to determine what recruitment looks like annually and where the hot spots (areas of high abundance) are located. Sorry I can’t provide you with any solid data on the subject.

Warm regards,


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Aug 27, 2007
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should have asked about the shrimp......

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