August 29, 2011– The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries announced the 2011 commercial fishing season for greater amberjack will reopen in state waters on September 1, at 12:01 a.m., and will remain open until October 30 at 11:59 p.m.
The 2011 season had previously been closed on June 18 as it was predicted that the 2011 quota had been met. However, after reviewing the landings (total amberjack caught and brought to dock measured in pounds) for the 2010 commercial greater amberjack season, fisheries biologists determined that an additional 86,452 pounds were available for harvest. That means commercial fishermen will have an additional 23 percent of the annual harvest available when they hit the waters this fall.
The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration will also open federal waters for commercial amberjack fishing September 1 through October 30.
Greater amberjack are found throughout the Gulf of Mexico as well as in the temperate and tropical Atlantic Ocean. Greater amberjack usually live in nearshore waters out to 300 feet deep. This species is found throughout the Gulf of Mexico, and is often found near offshore platforms, wrecks and artificial reefs. Greater amberjack can reach sizes of three feet in length and weights of 170 pounds.
Louisianacommercial landings of greater amberjack average 100,000 pounds annually.
The Louisiana 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.