Lobster traps (pots) are used for catching American lobster, spiny lobster, and other species. Designs vary, although nearly all traps share a set of common components.
Lobster traps are deployed as single units or connected together to form trawls. The number of traps connected to a trawl varies among fisheries.
In Canada, regulations require traps to include biodegradable escape panels and devices that allow undersized lobsters to escape.
NOAA Fisheries defines the term lobster trap as “any structure or other device, other than a net, that is placed, or designed to be placed, on the ocean bottom and is designed for or is capable of, catching lobsters . . .”
Lobster trap vessels fishing in Federal waters are subject to regulations regarding gear marking, tagging, deployment, and other requirements.