Today, at its regular meeting, the Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries Commission (LWFC) took action on a Declaration of Emergency to open the commercial season for the harvest of bait menhaden on Wednesday, March 15, 2017, based upon a request from the bait menhaden industry.
The commercial season for the harvest of bait menhaden typically opens on November 1 and runs through November 30 with a 3,000 metric ton quota. In the event that quota is not harvested during the normal November season, the bait season may resume April 1 of the following year.
The bait industry requested the LWFC open the season two weeks earlier on March 15 to meet customer demand. The quota was not met in 2016 and opening the season two weeks earlier in 2017 is not expected to negatively impact the quota or regular commercial menhaden season.