Lighthouse Lobster enTrapment
Machias Seal Island, the nesting place of Atlantic puffins and a working Lighthouse, is in the Grey Zone of a maritime dispute between the American and Canadian governments.
Since the 1870s, both nations have claimed sovereignty of the island. The United States government refers to the 1783 peace treaty with Great Britain whereas the Canadian government refers to a 1621 land grant given to the founder of Nova Scotia, Sir William Alexander.
Furthermore, Canada has occupied Machias Seal Island Lighthouse since 1832 and protected the island as wildlife and seabird sanctuary since 1944 as proof of ownership. Until recently, the internationally disputed area called the Grey Zone has been quiet until the Canadian Department of Fisheries and Oceans allowed Canadians to catch lobsters in the Grey Zone!
Friction between Canadian and Maine Lobstermen is rising as well as the prices of Lobster Grams according to Debo! There has been numerous reports of lobster sabotage as both governments claw their way out of this entrapment!
In the meantime, Captain John Norton hopes to continue his “Puffin Tours” to Machias Seal Island from Jonesport, Maine. Tourists can view up to 3,000 Clowns of the Sea (puffins) on the island flying around the Lighthouse! (Link to: You Tube Puffin Video)
The current 60-feet high Machias Seal Island octagonal concrete Lighthouse was built in 1915 and exhibits a Flashing White Light every 3-seconds 82-feet above sea level visible to a range of 17 nautical miles. The Lighthouse is staffed with two Canadian Light-keepers most likely for political territorial reasons.
For Map Directions, please visit the Google Map of Machias Seal Island Lighthouse.
Related News Story:
The lobster wars