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Lobster boat sinkings in Maine under investigation

The sinking of two lobster boats is rekindling memories of hostilities among lobstermen two years ago that led to a near-fatal shooting, boats being sunk and a barrage of lobster trap vandalism along Maine’s lobster-rich coast.

This week, two lobster boats were sabotaged, cut loose and allowing to drift free and flood with water before washing ashore.

The dispute has shone a light on the unwritten rules of the sea, where fishermen often take matters into their own hands to settle grudges.

Lobstermen for generations have cut trap lines and shouted threats to settle differences over who can set their traps and where. In more extreme instances, they’ve been known to ram boats and fire warning shots into the air.

“Hopefully it’s just a random thing, but who knows what’s to come,” Marine Patrol Maj. Alan Talbot told the Associated Press

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Click here for a 2009 report in Soundings.