May 12, 2015 – The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) reminds shrimpers that Turtle Excluder Devices (TED) and tow time restrictions are required in Louisiana waters. Federal regulations, which are enforced by U.S. Coast Guard and NOAA Fisheries, require any shrimp trawler in the Atlantic Area or Gulf Area to have an approved TED installed in each net that is rigged for fishing. However, certain exemptions to these requirements may apply (e.g. vessels without power or mechanical means of net retrieval, test trawls, skimmer and butterfly nets in compliance with tow time restrictions). A net is rigged for fishing if it is in the water, or if it is shackled, tied, or otherwise connected to any trawl door or board, or to any tow rope, cable, pole or extension, either on board or attached in any manner to the shrimp trawler.
Skimmer and butterfly nets are exempt from TED use; however, federal regulations require skimmer and butterfly net fishermen to limit tow times if they do not use TEDs. The tow time is measured from the time the cod-end of the net enters the water until it is removed from the water. Maximum tow times are 55 minutes from April 1 – October 31 and increase to 75 minutes from November 1 – March 31.
The 2015 Louisiana inshore shrimp season will open statewide at 6:00 a.m. Monday, May 18. For more information about the season and a map detailing the areas currently open to shrimping visit www.wlf.louisiana.gov/fishing/shrimp-seasons.
The Department of Wildlife and Fisheries is charged with managing and protecting Louisiana's abundant natural resources. For more information, visit us at www.wlf.louisiana.gov on Facebook at www.facebook.com/ldwffb or follow us on Twitter @LDWF.
For more information, contact Jeffrey Marx (337) 373-0032 or firstname.lastname@example.org. For press inquiries, contact Ashley Roth at email@example.com or (504) 286 -4162.