How Well do you Know Maine’s Lobstering Terms?

November 2, 2018

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Time for a little quiz – how well do you know Maine’s lobstering and colloquial terms? Here are some common (and a few not so common) expressions you might hear aboard a lobster boat or along our shore.

  1. Pistol –a lobster with no claws. If you look at a clawless lobster, you can almost see why, though it probably takes a little downeast logic to get there.
  2. Gear – refers to a fisherman’s traps, line, buoys as in “I’m going to set my gear tomorrow” or “I’m going to shift my gear offshore.”
  3. Shit poke- slang for the cormorant bird, a bird that can swim by diving underwater to take small fish and invertebrates.
  4. Funny eye- refers to a laced in head opening instead of the more typical hoop.
  5. Pocket – refers to a bait bag, which is the knitted bag fishermen put their bait – herring, Redfish, Pogies – in before it goes in their trap.
  6. Rope wrench – knife.
  7. Cull – a one clawed lobster – they are usually cost less on a per pound basis.
  8. Bait iron – the long metal rod with a handle used to pit bait/bait bags in trap.
  9. Spudger- slang for bait iron.
  10. Scrid- little or nothing as in “there’s not a scrid of pie left for me!”
  11. Chix – this is short for chicken and refers to a one pound lobster. Like a cull, it often yields a lower price.
  12. Go to Haul – going lobstering as in “I’m going to haul tomorrow”
  13. Broke down “George can’t go to haul because he’s broke down”
  14. Dooryard – front yard
  15. Select – larger lobster, 13/4lbs+ typically yields a higher price.
  16. “From away” – most of you reading this piece – anyone not from Maine (and to be from Maine your family has to go back at least 3 generations….)
  17. Oilers – the gear fishermen wear hauling – Grundens, etc.
  18. Hard Tellin’ – This one is just what you think, as in “Hard tellin’ what the season will bring.”
  19. Corker – something amazing remarkable – “it was a corker of a day. Ayuh.”
  20. Ayuh – if you don’t know this one…you need to visit Maine!