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Baby lobsters nurtured in Northumberland to boost life chances

A baby lobster. Credit: Amble Development Trust

Baby lobsters are being nurtured in Northumberland to improve their chances of making it to adulthood.

Female lobsters are brought to the Northumberland Seafood Centre's Hatchery, where their eggs are carefully packaged and preserved in sea-like conditions.

After they've been given time to develop the eggs are taken on board a conservation boat. The boat then takes them out to sea and lays them on the sea bed.

The hatchery nurtures the eggs in sea-like conditions Credit: Amble Development Trust

In the wild, about 1 in 20,000 of the eggs make it to be an adult lobster. When we take them through the process in the hatchery, about half of those will make it to be an adult lobster.

"So if I was a lobster I'd be much happier with my chances"

– Andrew Gooding, Northumberland Seafood Centre Manager
The baby lobsters are given time to grow in the hatchery Credit: Amble Development Trust

Their mothers are also set free at sea. Before they're unloaded, conservation officers put a notch in their tail which means fishermen can't land them until the notch has grown out, helping raise lobster numbers and awareness.

The baby lobsters disappear into the sea bed for three years until they resurface as fully grown adults. Some may then even return to the lobster hatchery to help breed the next generation.