Press Herald quotes Wahle in article on lobster crossbreeding in Europe

The Portland Press Herald spoke with Rick Wahle, a research professor in the University of Maine’s School of Marine Sciences, about a presentation that was made at the 11th International Conference & Workshop on Lobster Biology and Management hosted by UMaine and Boston University. Two Scandinavian biologists said American and European lobsters are crossbreeding and their offspring can survive in European waters, but it is too early to tell if the hybrids can reproduce. At the conference in Portland, the biologists disputed scientists’ assertion that American lobsters couldn’t survive in European waters, the Press Herald reported. Wahle, a co-chair of the event, said he wasn’t surprised by the presentation, but believes more research is needed on how the hybrid species matures to determine the American lobster’s potential threat. “There are clearly American lobsters out there, and I agree that the 100 or so they’ve already seen are the tip of the iceberg, but it’s got to be a pretty big iceberg to have an impact on the population,” Wahle said. “There’s no evidence of American lobsters taking off in those waters, like the green crab or Asian shore crab did here. That’s what makes this story stand apart from all the invasive species stories we’ve heard before.” The Associated Press also published a report, citing the Press Herald article. Maine Public and U.S. News & World Report carried the AP article.