Application deadline extended to April 21, 2020

A lobster being measured

The National Sea Grant Office (Sea Grant) has released a Notice of Funding Opportunity for the American Lobster Research Program. The American Lobster Research Program is part of Sea Grant's American Lobster Initiative and is a competition run by NOAA's National Sea Grant Office, not the Regional Lobster Extension Program. Information about the competition can be found below and on Questions about the competition should be sent to

Research Priorities

This program will support research to address critical gaps in knowledge about how the American lobster (Homarus americanus) and its fishery is being impacted by environmental change. It is informed by listening sessions with regional fishing industry stakeholders, state and federal fisheries managers, and university, state and federal fisheries researchers. 

Research topics suitable for study on American lobster under this Notice of Funding Opportunity (NOFO) should have a geographic focus on the Gulf of Maine, Georges Banks, and/or southern New England and address one or more of the following research priorities: 

  1. Increased understanding of life history parameters, including but not limited to, growth, maturity, and species interactions; 
  2. Larval ecology and early biology; 
  3. Spatial distribution and migration, including but not limited to, habitat and trophic interactions; and/or 
  4. Socio-ecological investigations to inform future management decisions, including but not limited to, research exploring bait alternatives to herring and their implications for the lobster fishery.   

This opportunity falls under the following NOAA Mission Goals: (1) Climate adaptation and mitigation; (2) Healthy Oceans; and (3) Resilient Coastal Communities and Economies.

Pending appropriation of funds, Sea Grant anticipates awarding between five to ten research projects totaling between $1 million and $2 million in FY2020. Projects must have a maximum duration of two years.

Connection to FY2019 Funding

The American Lobster Research Program funded seven projects in FY2019. A list of these projects can be found here.

To Apply

National Sea Grant American Lobster Research Program

NOAA-OAR-SG-2020-2006355 (Notice of Funding Opportunity Number)

  • Applications must be submitted by 11:59 p.m. Eastern Time on March 19, 2020. DEADLINE EXTENDED: April 21, 2020.
  • Submit applications via
  • Questions about the competition should be sent to
    • Note that National Sea Grant Office staff will only be available to answer questions until 5:00 p.m. Eastern Time on April 21, 2020.
  • Projects are expected to run up to 2 years between September 1, 2020 - August 31, 2022.


Eligibility: Open to any individual; any public or private corporation, partnership, or other association or entity (including any Sea Grant College, Sea Grant Institute or other institution); or any State, political subdivision of a State, Tribal government or agency or officer thereof. Federal agencies and their personnel are not permitted to receive federal funding under this competition; however, federal scientists and other employees can serve as uncompensated partners or co-Principal Investigators on applications. Federal labs and offices can also make available specialized expertise, facilities or equipment to applicants but cannot be compensated under this competition for their use, nor can the value of such Notice of Federal Funding Page 6 of 20 assets be used as match.

The National Sea Grant College Program champions diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) by recruiting, retaining and preparing a diverse workforce, and proactively engaging and serving the diverse populations of coastal communities. Sea Grant is committed to building inclusive research, extension, communication and education programs that serve people with unique backgrounds, circumstances, needs, perspectives and ways of thinking. We encourage applicants of all ages, races, ethnicities, national origins, gender identities, sexual orientations, disabilities, cultures, religions, citizenship types, marital statuses, education levels, job classifications, veteran status types, and income, and socioeconomic status types to apply for this opportunity.


The National Sea Grant Office will host a webinar to provide an overview of the 2020 Sea Grant American Lobster Research Program funding opportunity and its application process. The webinar will include a presentation and provide an opportunity to ask questions that you may have about applying to the announcement.

Webinar Date: Tuesday, February 11, 2020
Time: 1:30 - 2:30 p.m. Eastern