Winter is coming! What does that mean for lobsters and lobster season? - Pine Tree Seafood

Winter is coming! What does that mean for lobsters and lobster season?

Winter is coming! What does that mean for lobsters and lobster season?

Winter is coming! What does that mean for lobsters and lobster season?

Like all seafood, lobster has a peak season. But have you ever wondered: what happens to lobster during the winter, and how can I still get lobster meat even when it’s out of season?

That leads to even more questions: is it safe to eat lobster out of season? And is out of season lobster still good quality seafood?

We get it; we all want to safely enjoy lobster all year round! Here’s what it means for lobster when winter is coming.

In this post, you’ll learn: 

  • What does winter mean for lobsters?
  • What does winter mean for lobstermen and women?
  • Are lobsters any good in the winter?
  • When is lobster season?
  • Can I still have lobster delivered in the winter?

What does winter mean for lobsters?

First, winter means that lobsters are a whole lot harder to catch. When the weather turns colder in the fall, lobsters begin migrating out to sea, where they’ll stay during the winter season. 

During the warmer months, most lobstermen and women catch their crustaceans anywhere from 0 – 3 miles from shore. But in the winter months, they have to travel as far as 20 – 40 miles out to sea.

Lobster traps in decorative Christmas tree fashion.

What does winter mean for lobstermen and women?

It’s estimated that about 30 – 40% of lobstermen will fish year round. Some fishermen and women will still set out traps in order to bring us delicious lobster meat. However, they’ll often check traps less often with fewer lobsters available.

Other lobstermen and women will travel further out to sea to catch lobster. Since there’s an added risk with traveling far out in the ocean, more time to travel back and forth, more expense with fuel costs, and a smaller catch, that means the cost of the lobster will increase during the winter.

Those lobster men and women who choose to take the season off will take the opportunity to prepare for the next year. They’ll repair traps, lines, and their boats, so they’re ready for the following season.

Are lobsters any good in the winter?

So while lobsters are available in the winter — albeit at a higher cost — it begs the question: is it worth it? How do lobsters taste in the winter?

Depending on your preference of hard vs. soft shell lobsters, you might prefer winter lobsters. 

In warmer water, lobsters will molt more often to grow. Meanwhile, in colder waters, lobsters will develop a harder, darker shell. And if you prefer the meatier insides of a hard shell lobster, you’ll love them in winter!

When is lobster season?

As you’ve probably guessed, the bulk of Maine lobsters are caught during the warmer months. June through December, when lobsters are the most active, is the peak lobster season. 

However, as we’ve covered, lobsters are still available January through April, but in lower quantities.

lobster boats during the winter time in Maine

Can I still have lobster delivered in the winter?

Yes, you can still have your lobster delivered during non-peak times of year! However, with fewer fishermen and women catching lobster and higher associated costs to lobster, you’ll see higher prices per pound.


While the amount of lobsters (and the fishermen and women who catch them) decrease during the winter months, you can certainly still enjoy a fresh, delicious lobster in January through April!

Ready to try a winter Maine lobster for yourself? Order today or come into our Scarborough, Maine location to purchase fresh caught Maine lobster.

SCARBOROUGH’S LOCAL, FRESH SEAFOOD AND PRODUCE MARKET SERVING SOUTHERN MAINE AND AVAILABLE FOR ONLINE ORDERING