ELLSWORTH — Maine fishermen are nearing their quota for this spring’s harvest of baby eels.

Fishermen in Maine are allowed to harvest a little more than 9,600 pounds of elvers annually. State records show they have harvested more than 85 percent of the quota. They’re getting more than $1,300 per pound wholesale for the elvers.

Elvers were worth more than $2,100 per pound in 2015. Maine elvers came into high demand several years ago because Asian and European supplies dried up. The fishery was worth less than $600,000 in 2010 and shot up to more than $40 million in 2012.

The quota and other controls have been established to conserve the elver stock.


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