Fisheries and Resources Monitoring System

 Saint Vincent and the Grenadines  Lobster fishery
Fishery  Fact Sheet
Fishery Resources Report 2016
 Saint Vincent and the Grenadines  Lobster fishery
Fact Sheet Citation  
Lobster fishery
Owned byFood and Agriculture Organization (FAO) – more>>

Overview: The lobster habitats are found on the transboundary Grenada bank, hence the fishery is based mainly in the Grenadine Island chain. Approximately 66% of lobsters are exported.

Location of  Saint Vincent and the Grenadines  Lobster fishery

Geographic reference:   Saint Vincent and the Grenadines 
Spatial Scale: National
Reference year: 2014
Approach: Fishing Activity

Fishing Activity
Fishing Gear: Pots  

Type of production system: Artisanal
Fishery Area: Saint Vincent/Grenadines

Seasonality: September to April

Harvested Resource
Target Species: Caribbean spiny lobster
Associated Species: Red hind; Parrotfishes nei

Means of Production
Vessel Type: Fishing vessels not specified
Fishery Indicators
Nominal Effort: Number of vessels
Employment: Number of fishermen
Production: Landed Volume; Export price 

Fishing Activity
Type of production system: Artisanal   

Fishery Area
Bottom type: Coral reef.   Depth zone: Shelf (50 m - 200 m).   Horizontal distribution: Neritic.   Vertical distribution: Benthic.  

Geo References
Vessel Type
Fishing vessels not specified
Flat transom and pirogues: these are open with a pointed bow and flat transom, ranging from 7 - 10 m in length with a beam of 1 - 2.8 m. They are constructed from fibreglass and powered by one or two outboard gasoline engines ranging from 40 - 85 hp. 

Flag State
Saint Vincent/Grenadines
Fishing Gear
Gear nei
Mask, snorkle and fins. Fish pots with mesh wire.
Fleet segment
Fishers in Union Island and Canouan use SCUBA to dive. A team of a dozen or so men of which five or six are SCUBA divers using stick to hook the lobsters. In Bequia each vessels would set about 3 or so fish pots.
September to April
Kima, Asht, Clif, Cano, Pafa
Trip Duration
~ 3 hours
Fisherfolks Community
List of fishery Indicators
Fishery Indicators
TypeMeasureValueUnitTime period
Nominal EffortNumber of vessels 30 - 40vessels2014
EmploymentNumber of fishermen ~100Persons2014
ProductionLanded Volume ~21 (tonnes/year)tonnes2003-2012
Landed Volume 21.735tonnes2014
Export price 225 200USD/year2014
Post Harvest
Barbados, USA, Saint Lucia,Trinidad 
Management unit: Yes

Jurisdictional framework
Management Body/Authority(ies): Fisheries Division, Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries, St. Vincent and the Grenadines
Mandate: Management.  
Area under national jurisdiction: Saint Vincent/Grenadines
Maritime Area: Exclusive Economic Zone Areas (EEZ).  
Management Regime
The Fisheries Division has the following pieces of legislation to assist with the management and development of the sector: The Fisheries Act (1986) and Regulation (1987). These form part of the OECS harmonized legislation. Cover: Fisheries access agreements, local and foreign fishing licencing, fisheries research, enforcement, registration of fishing vessels as well as conservation measures such as close season, size restriction etc. We also abide by the Conservation and Management method set out by the Code of Conduct for Responsible fisheries. Also the UN Fish Stock Agreement. 
Management Methods

Fisheries Regulations with focus on Fish size limits, Spawner/Juvenile protection - Binding

Do not catch lobsters that are undersize (less than 25 cm or a carapace length of less than 95 mm). Less than one and a half pounds in weight or a tail wght of less than 7 ozs. Persons are not allowed to have, sell or buy lobsters carrying eggs, undersize or moulting. No person shall have lobsters during the close season 1st May to 31st August.
  • Aquatic species-related measures
    Minimum carapace size, minimum fish size, minimum fish weight
  • Gear-related measures
    Gear type - no person shall capture any lobster other than by hand, loop, pot or trap. No person shall have in his possession or sell any lobster that has been speared, hooked or otherwise impaled.
  • Vessel-related measures
    No person shall land from a fishing vessel any lobster that is not whole.
  • Fishing activity-related measures
    Close season - no person shall fish for lobster during the period of a close season.
Source of Information
Fisheries Division, Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries, Kingstown, St. Vincent and the Grenadines. Personal communication, January 2016.  Click to open
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