Let's Do This - Whitby Lobster Hatchery 2022

by Whitby Lobster Hatchery (North Sea Conservation) in Whitby, North Yorkshire, United Kingdom

We did it
On 25th June 2022 we successfully raised £1,460 ( + est. £238.75 Gift Aid ) with 17 supporters in 49 days

Over the past 18 months we have been planning, designing & preparing: now, we are ready to install the hatchery. To do it, we need your help

Project by Whitby Lobster Hatchery (North Sea Conservation)


We have been extremely busy over the past year. Working to get the lobster hatchery up and running, ensuring the conservation of our marine ecosystems and the protection of our local fishing communities. 

Want to hear what we have been up to over the past year? Check out our year 1 report (link below).


Now we are finally ready to install the hatchery and start releasing juvenile lobsters into the sea. We are so close but we need your help to get the project up and running. Support for us is support for our local fishing communities, marine environment and local economy. 

Your donation will go directly to paying the deposit for the hatchery equipment. We will then be able to get the full system install early summer 2022.


Who We Are

At the Whitby Lobster Hatchery we aim to release juvenile lobsters into the ocean. Conserve lobster populations and protecting fishing livelihoods into the future. We stand by three core values:

- Conservation

The Whitby Lobster Hatchery aims to protect Whitby’s fishing heritage by conserving the local lobster populations. To do this we will release 100,000 juvenile lobsters into the sea; offsetting the number of lobsters caught by Whitby’s fishing fleet and protecting the region’s lobster industry for generations to come.

- Education

Alongside the hatchery, we intend to provide an educational and interactive outreach and education program. Working alongside the upcoming Marine Discovery Whitby Centre, w e look forward to welcoming members of the public and school groups to learn about the life of lobsters, Whitby’s unique fishing heritage and how much difference marine conservation can make. 

- Research

Our state-of-the-art hatchery system will also serve as an institute of research in partnership with local universities, offering a reliable source of current data as well as invaluable experience for marine conservation students through a series of internship programs. We hope to connect and collaborate with lobster hatcheries across the country to understand more about the life of this incredible and valuable creature.


The Problem

Whitby’s prestigious fishing heritage was built upon an abundance of white fish, however, the UK’s white fish industry collapse through overfishing and mismanagement. Subsequently, considerable investment was made in crab and lobster potting boats, as both are highly sought-after products and continue to fetch a high price today.

Inevitably, this has resulted in increased pressure on local lobster stocks and we are concerned that history is in danger of repeating itself. If the lobster industry does collapse, just like the whitefish industry only recent years ago, dozens of fishing boats and hundreds of people will be out of work, effectively putting an end to a historic fishing community that has made Whitby famous around the world.

Recent wash up events which have impacted our coastline for the past 6/7 months have been a sobering reminder of the vulnerability of our oceans. The concern and sadness seeing the death of our marine wildlife has been felt throughout of costal communities. We believe we can be part of the solution.

Our Solution

Lobsters produce up to 20,000 eggs per cycle, which are released into the water as larvae. However, statistically, only 1% of these larvae survive. By developing the eggs safely in our hatchery, we can eliminate many early risks by growing the eggs until they are juvenile lobsters, mature enough to be independent, bottom-dwelling creatures. This intervention alone will dramatically increase the larval survival rate to 30 - 50%. 


Once they’re ready, we’ll release these juvenile lobsters into the sea where they will fortify the existing lobster population year on year. Juvenile lobsters take 5-7 years to grow to market size and during this time they will reach sexual maturity and begin to release eggs of their own. At the Whitby Lobster Hatchery, we believe that this conservation method, alongside effective management, will protect lobster fishing in Whitby by strengthening local lobster stocks and securing jobs for Whitby’s fishing fleet. 

The Funding

Funding this project will enable us to get the full hatchery system installed this summer.

 Working with our hatchery specialist we nearly have everything in place.. one more step to go.

Your donation we go directly to the deposit to get the lobster hatchery equipment. 

We will then be able to get the full system installed early summer 2022.

Photo (above) by Polly A. Baldwin




This project offers rewards in return for your donation. Please select a reward below.

£50 or more

1 of 20 claimed

Hatchery Tours Plus Tee-shirt & Cap

Come behind the scenes and learn about our hatchery project and process first hand. Get up close with our juvenile lobsters and interact with the adult lobsters.

£10 or more

Supporters Mug + Stickers + Thank you message

Many thanks for your support! All the support we receive will help our hatchery get up and running. Conserving our local marine environment, protecting our local fishing community and educating our future generations.

£25 or more

Sponsor a juvenile lobster

Pay for the release of a juvenile lobster out into the oceans. Name and follow the progress of your juvenile through our hatchery system! See photos of juvenile lobster through the hatchery process and release.

£30 or more

Sponsor a juvenile lobster + Hatchery TeeShirt

Pay for the release of a juvenile lobster out into the oceans. Name and follow the progress of your juvenile through our hatchery system! See photos of juvenile lobster through the hatchery process and release.

£75 or more

Lobster supporter pack - Kit yourself out in merch

A huge thanks from us at the hatchery project. You will be looking smart in our exclusive "Let's do this 2022" merchandise including a t-shirt, hoodie, cap, tote bag and mystery gift!! LET'S DO THIS

£175 or more

4 of 25 claimed

Lobster Contributor - Your name laser cut

You are amazing.. thanks so much for your support. We will honour your support on the outside of the hatchery for years to come. Laser cut and visible from Pier Road in Whitby.

£250 or more

Marine Biology talk at your kids school

One of our team members will come to your school to talk and inspire your child class about our native marine wildlife, suistainable fishing and the lobster hatchery. Interactive, fun and educational. School must be 50 mile radius of Whitby

£1,000 or more


Promote your business on our website, social media and at our facility. Various options available to suite yours needs. GET IN TOUCH [email protected]

£1,000 or more

Buy One Release One - For Restaurants

Do you own or work at a restaurants. Sign up to our "buy one release one" scheme. Showcase your commitment to sustainable seafood by giving your customers a more sustainable choice. For every seafood or lobster dish sold donate £1 to the Whitby Lobster Hatchery. Get in touch: [email protected]

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