Lobsters were once so plentiful that after a storm they would wash ashore in deep piles. Lobsters were originally gathered by hand. It wasn’t until the mid-19th century that lobster trapping became popular. Soft-shelled lobster is considered to have sweeter, more tender meat. A soft-shelled lobster is one that has just molted and is in a growing phase. Soft-shelled lobsters are called “shedders.” Most soft-shelled lobsters are caught from July to October. Hard-shelled lobsters have darker claws than the soft-shelled ones. Since striped bass have no teeth, they swallow lobsters whole, but only the tiny ones. Even full-grown lobsters can fall prey to codfish and the occasional octopus. You can catch lobsters by hand, just be sure to wear heavy-duty gloves.