Closure helps protect smaller shrimp so they may increase in size, value; closure previously approved at Dec. 2 Commission meeting
The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) will close a portion of state offshore waters to shrimping at sunset today, December 21, 2010.
The Wildlife and Fisheries Commission authorized this closure at its Dec. 2 meeting but also provided authority to LDWF Secretary Robert Barham to delay the closure if marketable quantities of white shrimp were available for harvest. However, current biological sampling data indicate that significant numbers of small white shrimp are found in these waters so these waters will be closed to shrimping.
That portion of state outside waters, south of the Inside/Outside Shrimp Line as described in LA R.S. 56:495, from the western shore of Freshwater Bayou Canal at 92 degrees 18 minutes 33 seconds west longitude to the U.S. Coast Guard navigation light off the northwest shore of Caillou Boca at 29 degrees 03 minutes 10 seconds north latitude and 90 degrees 50 minutes 27 seconds west longitude will close to shrimping at sunset today, Dec. 21.
Provisions in state statute temporarily exempt the minimum possession count of 100 (whole shrimp) count per pound on white shrimp from October 15 through the third Monday in December. Following Dec. 20, it became illegal to possess white shrimp smaller than 100 count per pound onboard a vessel.
All state outside waters east of the U.S. Coast Guard navigational light off the northwest shore of Caillou Boca, as well as state outside waters west of Freshwater Bayou Canal will remain open to shrimping. The Department will continue monitoring the sizes and abundance of shrimp in these offshore waters, so that other actions to close or re-open waters may be taken based on the availability of harvestable shrimp in these areas, while protecting the large numbers of very small white shrimp.
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 additional information please contact Ashley Wethey at firstname.lastname@example.org  or (225) 765-5113.