Pesticides Linked To Mass Lobster Deaths In Bay of Fundy

Despite being some of the most dangerous commercially-used chemicals known to man, pesticides are being spread on crops and fields with reckless abandon. Not only does the use of pesticides put people and the environment at risk, improper disposal can also have diastrous effects on wildlife.

CBC News recently reported that Canadian fishermen are furious that a pesticide normally used for agriculture somehow ended up in the Bay of Fundy and may have contributed to the death of hundreds of lobsters.

The Bay of Fundy is known as the home of the best-tasting lobster in the world, but that reputation might be in danger if authorities can’t figure out why the lobsters are dying in alarming numbers.

Mass lobster deaths have occurred in three sites across the bay and have been linked to an agricultural pesticide, Cypermethrin, which is illegal to use in marine environments and toxic to lobsters (CBC).

Many people are unaware of just how easy it is for agricultural pesticides to become part of the food or even water supply in their area. It is even more disturbing to consider that even though pesticides are hazardous to human health and the environment, these pervasive chemicals are aggressively promoted by multinational corporations, government agencies, and other players in a more than $35 billion a year industry.

Earlier this month the Center for Biological Diversity informed the U.S. EPA that it intends to sue the agency for failing to adequately evaluate and regulate nearly 400 pesticides harmful to hundreds of endangered species across the country as well as human beings. And activitsts are demanding an investigation of the possible link between occupational pesticides and Parkinson’s disease.

To provide consumers with current, accurate information about the dangerous pesticides that are present on the foods we eat every day, the Pesticide Action Network (PAN) recently released the What’s On My Food? app for the iPhone.

Learn more about the negative effect of pesticides on your health, and take action:

Petition: Investigate the Link Between Pesticides and Parkinson’s Disease

Petition: Protect Children From Toxic Pesticide Clouds

Image Credit: Flickr Creative Commons - mfury

78 comments

Barbara T.
Barbara Talbert2 years ago

The US and Canada are complicit in what is called a "science based" agenda. I feel that much of this is pseudo science and real science should consider water, soil, plants, people, animals of the earth and the oceans, and fish of all kinds as a whole as well as of viewing them as parts of the whole. The " Age of Chemicals" is over if we want to survive and thrive on our planet.

Jim S.
Jim S.4 years ago

what a bunch of Morons ... 1st off The Bay Of Fundy Is THE Largest protected Area that Lobster (Americus Homus) ONLY lives From just south of the St Lawerance Seaway with all the pollution from its shipping both into and out of North America's heartland the Gulf Of Maine Is PART of the Bay Of Fundy and is The Gulf inside Cape Cod... the Fishery Called the Grand Banks is affected as well... Long Island sound and The Hudson Canyon are raped as The Greater NYC area has been Dumping Barges of garbage out there for 100 years , Ruining This "other Half" of a poor fishery, for americus homus That is it , It is not found anywhere else in the world, Unlike The Spiney lobsters of Florida (Caribean) and Down under... The Bay of Fundy was one of the most pristeine bodies of water near population zones, Because it has the highest tides in the world 16 meters ?
http://www.planetware.com/i/map/CDN/bay-of-fundy-tide-levels-map.jpg"

Jim S.
Jim S.4 years ago

what a bunch of Morons ... 1st off The Bay Of Fundy Is THE Largest protected Area that Lobster (Americus Homus) ONLY lives From just south of the St Lawerance Seaway with all the pollution from its shipping both into and out of North America's heartland the Gulf Of Maine Is PART of the Bay Of Fundy and is The Gulf inside Cape Cod... the Fishery Called the Grand Banks is affected as well... Long Island sound and The Hudson Canyon are raped as The Greater NYC area has been Dumping Barges of garbage out there for 100 years , Ruining This "other Half" of a poor fishery, for americus homus That is it , It is not found anywhere else in the world, Unlike The Spiney lobsters of Florida (Caribean) and Down under... The Bay of Fundy was one of the most pristeine bodies of water near population zones, Because it has the highest tides in the world 16 meters ?
Map copyright PlanetWare.com

Jonathan Y.
Jonathan Y.6 years ago

Rachel Carson, we hardly knew ye.

Anthony P.
Anthony P.6 years ago

This is where I live and although I do nor care for lobster, I care for the environment and the livelihoods of the fishermen who have been so hard hit year after recent year.
Unfortunately this is just the surface of an series of catastrophes that are about to unfold in the area. Whether mankind or womankind was responsible for this event, womankind was responsible for the soon to be opened causeway in Moncton, a few miles up river from this point, a damned area of 50 years that is now to be flooded and tided.
Humankind, it would seem has learned nothing in the past 50 years and I am drawn to the Canadian songstress Joni Mitchel's line from "Big Yellow Taxi" - "Give me spots on my apples but leave me the birds and the bees". The proverbial "They" hid behind ignorance back then, "Oh we didn't know these chemicals would have this effect...." There are no excuses now, this is just laziness and believing "They" could get away with it because it was easier to use that substance on those crops and let the waste run off into the vast network of rivers and streams around here that lead to the Bay of Fundy. "Hey it has the highest tides in the world, it's sure to be washed away and no one will be any the wiser" Not this time buddy and the people who are paying are the ones who's bottom line has already dropped out when lobster was priced down to $5/lb.
Thank you for globalizing local problems Care2 Inc. and thank you for your like minded comments fellow conservationists.

Alice Diane Celebre
Alice C.6 years ago

The use of pesticides must be stopped ~ NOW !

Halle P.
Past Member 6 years ago

These chemicals have been proved poisones and deadly time and time again. How many times will it take for people to realize that the use of these desturctive chemicals must be stopped. The animals and plants on this planet need protection, and the only ones who can do this is us!! It must be stopped!!! Not just for the lobsters but for anything else living on this planet we call home!!

Mary Swan
Mary S.6 years ago

It is interesting to note that this "spill" or whatever actually put these chemicals into the Bay of Fundy, happened in November, just one month AFTER the province of New Brunswick banned or limited to liscensed professionals almomst ALL toxic pesticides/herbicides and fungicides. I wonder if someone simply decided that since they could no longer legally sell their poison to the public it was ok to dispose of it in the bay. Just a thought, though I hope this was not the case.

I can't quickly find the list of banned chemicals to know for sure if cypermethrin is still available for retail sale, just available for "industry" use or banned entirely. The new laws are a bit complicated, some of the chemicals are still available to liscenced landscapers (and farmers). This is not a perfect solution but at least we can hope the professionals are being a bit more careful with where and how much of these chemicals they use.

We here in New Brunswick are trying to make a difference, but educating both the home owner who wants a perfect lawn as well as the farmer who has never tried to grow without chemicals that they are part of the problem is an uphill battle.

sheila b.
sheila b.6 years ago

It's time for harsher penalties and serious consequences for those who participate in poisoning and destroying the earth and it's inhabitants.

Elainna Crowell
Elainna Crowell6 years ago

This is simply outrageous!!! Were the pesticides dumped or was it a case of run off and where did the run off come from? Either way, its about time that poisoning any body of water with a toxic substance should be a criminal offense!