Another day, another lobster liberation.

It seems that buying or stealing live lobster and returning them to the ocean is becoming a popular trend this year, and the frequency of prison breaks is only increasing during the summer months.

In June, we saw a vegan-run rescue operation that the savior likened her actions to saving slaves through the Underground Railroad, a grocery store passing up on a 15-pound bug and a clam bar setting their 130-year-old, 20-pound friend who was living in their live fish tank free.

These stories are pretty quirky, yes, but the latest tale of lobster freedom blows the others out of the water.

This past weekend, a group of Buddhist monks out of Prince Edward Island, Canada, purchased and released eight boxes of live lobsters (estimated to be about 600 pounds) to get people to think about compassion.

"This whole purpose for us is to cultivate this compassion toward others. It doesn't have to be lobsters, it can be worms, flies, any animals, drive slower so we don't run over little critters on the street,” said Venerable Dan of the Great Enlightenment Buddhist Institute Society.

He told Shane Ross of CBC News that they weren’t doing it to change anyone’s dietary habits. He said the release was an exercise in caring and that they work to be kind to all living beings.

The group held a special ceremony before releasing the lobsters and found a spot where the lobsters were unlikely to be recaptured anytime soon.

While I don’t recommend dropping your entire catch just to be nice, this story is a great reminder to respect the animals that we catch, consume and make a living off.

Up here in Maine, Id bet a bystander would jump in after a lobster and claim it as their own if they saw anyone throwing one of the states prized crustaceans back into the ocean. To do my part, maybe Ill just have one lobster roll the next time I'm out by the pier.

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Samuel Hill is the former associate editor for National Fisherman. He is a graduate of the University of Southern Maine where he got his start in journalism at the campus’ newspaper, the Free Press. He has also written for the Bangor Daily News, the Outline, Motherboard and other publications about technology and culture.

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