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The Secret Life Of Lobsters: How Fishermen And Scientists Are Unraveling The Mysteries Of Our Favorite Crustacean (2005)

The Secret Life of Lobsters: How Fishermen and Scientists Are Unraveling the Mysteries of Our Favorite Crustacean (2005)

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3.95 of 5 Votes: 5
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0060555599 (ISBN13: 9780060555597)
harper perennial

About book The Secret Life Of Lobsters: How Fishermen And Scientists Are Unraveling The Mysteries Of Our Favorite Crustacean (2005)

This book got off to a slow start, but picked up speed throughout the book. I found myself somewhat bored and uninterested with the first couple of chapters in this book, but I stuck with it and by the middle of the book I was sucked into the lobster science.Prior to reading this book I hadn't thought much about lobsters, other than I want to try eating one the next time I find myself in Maine. But this book changed that and really caused me to think a lot about the life of a lobster, beyond the dinner plate.Lobsters are interesting creatures; creatures that we don't (or at least didn't until the 1980's) know much about. This book educates the reader about lobsters in a simple yet informative manner. Bestowing upon the reader a lot of scientific information with the perspectives of the fishermen thrown in for good measure. I found the two perspectives and how the clashed or worked together to be fascinating. I found it really unique and inspiring how the lobstermen were taking the conservation and scientific measurement of the lobsters into their own hands, and their findings were extremely accurate.The writing in this book was decent. I wouldn't say it's the best nonfiction writing that I've ever read, but it was definitely not the worst. The author does a nice job of writing in an understandable manner and bringing all perspectives to light for the reader to understand.Although this book took me some time to really get into, I'm glad that I read it. I would highly recommend this book if you're interested in learning more about lobsters but I would also recommend it as a lesson in listening to each side of an argument/controversy, sometimes the side you're more inclined to root for isn't the one that's right.

A journalistic narrative about the intimate details of lobsters, The Secret Life of Lobsters tells of how fishermen, scientists, and teams of both have worked to better understand one of our most delectable crustaceans. Told from the point of view of individual fisherman and various scientists, this novel is the most fluid and engaging nonfiction work I have ever read. The narrative provides a flow of information without bogging down or confusing the reader. As you learn about the life cycle and breeding habits of the lobster, you are transported to the Maine coast to better understand the lives of the fisherman and scientists who make their living on them. Most importantly, Trevor Corson presents the controversy surrounding lobster fishing and research. He reveals a side of the issue often overlooked by the politicians and government researchers making the laws. I highly recommend this book to anyone that is interested in marine biology, fishing politics, or simply enjoys the taste of a buttered lobster on a warm summer day.

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I read this in my continuing attempt to find my inner lobster (my Umwelt), which is necessary for someone who "should have been a pair of ragged claws, scuttling across the floors of silent seas." Plenty of warm, buttery tidbits here about lobster behavior, serving as a metaphor perhaps for the human drama of lobstermen versus the government. The term 'pissing contest' has taken on new meaning. By coincidence, as I was reading this, I visited one of those new Uber-supermarkets; you know, a place where you can listen to live music, get your car's oil changed and find organic persimmons out of season. They had, of course, a lobster tank with a few dozen of what our author calls 'our favorite crustaceans' crawling over each other. I wanted to shout out loud, "No. Stop this. They don't like that. That's not how they live."This book helped me to see lobsters. I'm happy to eat them though.

I love lobster. I thought they were getting rare (as in too many being caught). The government thought so too, so they limited the haul. Then the lobstermen (who had a darn good reason to know more about lobster behavior than any government policy wonk) figured out that was not so. In the end, this is mainly a story about how the industry effectively won the right to regulate its catch itself, with a side does of "it's not really necessary." Those lobsters are having a LOT of sex. But how lobsters have sex, how they choose their mates, and what happens to the little baby lobsterettes after they hatch is the best part of the story ... essentially a detective story.Absolutely fascinating! Eat more lobster! It helps the lobstermen!
—William Blair

The lobsters are really interesting. The people are too - marine scientists and lobster fishermen and their families - just not as much. I read this for the natural history aspect, and the lobster ecology, biology, behavior, and population dynamics do not disappoint. Pretty fascinating stuff, especially the courting and mating rituals of the spiny crustaceans, which weren't what the scientists were expecting when they finally got around to testing out their ideas with live lobsters in seawater tanks. For me, the best thing about the book is that it is a great case study of how science is done, how scientists (driven by one of the best of our species' qualities, curiosity) ask questions about interesting, often puzzling, phenomenon, come up with theories to explain what they've observed, then devise simple but ingenious experiments, as in this book, to test out their ideas, with the results often giving rise to new questions and new theories. It's a great book on the scientific method, as it turns out.

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