Spiny Lobster Season Opens

KEY WEST, Fla. (AP) _ Commercial fishermen in the Florida Keys are optimistic as spiny lobster season begins.

The eight-month season opens Monday.

The Florida Keys island chain typically makes up around 90 percent of the state catch each year.

Florida Keys Commercial Fishermen’s Association President Bill Kelly tells The Miami Herald (http://hrld.us/QEL7RK ) that plentiful catches during the two-day mini-season last month indicate an abundance of lobsters available.

The catch was 5.21 million pounds in 2010 and 5.28 million pounds in 2011.

The average price per pound spiked to $6.17 in 2010 and $6.67 in 2011.

Kelly says the demand for live lobsters in Asia has boosted prices as much as $3 a pound since 2009.