Lobster fishermen in many P.E.I. ports have returned to fishing following a protest over prices that kept them off the water for about a week.

Some in ports on the Northumberland Strait — in Launching, Georgetown, Grahams Pond and Beach Point — are not fishing Tuesday in solidarity with Nova Scotia and New Brunswick fishermen still tied up. Many in those two provinces, however, have also returned to the water.

Some fishermen in Western P.E.I. are calling the protest a failure, because it did not pressure processors to raise prices. West Prince fisherman Scott McNeill still believes it was the right thing to do.


West Prince fisherman Scott MacNeill thinks it's foolish for fishermen to stop their protest now.

"We want a price. And as of right now, some of these boats are $15,000 in the hole by being tied up from Wednesday. But once we have this time invested, to stop now is just foolish," said MacNeill.

But a majority of West Prince fishermen have decided to head out.

"Most fishermen I talked to, I think they want to get back at it," said Craig Avery, president of the Western Gulf Fishermen's Association.

"It's disappointing we didn't accomplish anything. I don't think we accomplished much other than to show a good bit of solidarity that we can do this kind of stuff."

Processors say they can't and won't budge from their current price of around $3 a pound. They say that's the best they can do considering the price they are getting from the marketplace.

Avery is hopeful that the provincial government will be able to do something to help. Premier Robert Ghiz said the government has asked for an independent review of the markets to see if processors are offering a fair price. McNeill is not convinced things will change.

"It's going to end up the way it always ends up," he said.

"The fishermen are going to end up fighting amongst themselves, and they're going to stop focusing on the actual cause that we started here to begin with. All we want is a fair price for our lobsters."

The province has appointed former auditor general Colin Younker to review the industry and the prices paid to fishermen at the wharf.