The Secret Life of Lobsters

I know, this doesn't sound like a park-related read, but it's based around the livelihoods of lobstermen who settled on and around Mount Desert Island more than a century ago.

Within the covers you'll learn everything you ever wanted to know about lobsters and, yes, more. You'll definitely reflect on the book the next time you order lobster.

For instance, did you know that during Colonial days lobsters were considered trash and were fed to pigs?


Historians of New England often note that early settlers considered lobster a kind of junk food that was fit only for swine, servants, and prisoners. These claims may be exaggerated. But storms could blow lobsters onto beaches by the hundreds, making them a convenient source of feed or fertilizer for coastal farms, and most scholars agree that lobster was generally considered a low-class dish for human consumption. After their first winter in Plymouth, a group of Pilgrims on an expedition to what is now Boston Harbor gladly helped themselves to fresh lobsters that had been piled on the beach by Native Americans. By the following year, however, the leader of the Pilgrims, William Bradford, reported shame at having to serve lobster in lieu of more respectable fare.

Or, did you know that around the world there are lobsters known as the "hunchback locust lobster," the "regal slipper lobster," "marbled mitten lobsters," or both the "unicorn" and "buffalo blunt-horn" lobsters?

Author Trevor Corson digs deeply into the history, biology, and human relationships with lobsters in telling this story. He explains mating rituals, how susceptible lobsters are to foes when they shed their shells, and how lobster buoys came to be (initially, they were carved from tree trunks). He takes us to Little Cranberry Island, just off the coast of Mount Desert Island and Acadia National Park.

This thorough lobster primer is just thing for a winter night's read, and will leave you well-versed on the crustaceans and the industry that has been raised up on their backs in time for your next visit to Acadia.

Amazon Detail : Product Description

In this intimate portrait of an island lobstering community and aneccentric band of renegade biologists, journalist Trevor Corson escorts the reader onto the slippery decks of fishing boats, through danger-filled scuba dives, and deep into the churning currents of the Gulf of Maine to learn about the secret undersea lives of lobsters.

This P.S. edition features an extra 16 pages of insights into the book, including author interviews, recommended reading, and more.