LDWF Plans Five Crab Trap Closures Along Louisiana Coast in 2019

Release Date: 10/05/2018

At today’s monthly meeting, the Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries Commission adopted a Notice of Intent (NOI) allowing the removal of derelict crab traps from five different areas along Louisiana’s coast in 2019.

Since 2004, the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries, together with individual volunteers and organizations, has successfully removed and disposed of over 37,000 abandoned and derelict crabs. The removal of these crab traps is especially important to boating safety and crab harvesting efforts. Last year, LDWF, Lake Pontchartrain Basin Foundation members, volunteers, BTNEP, CCA and members of the recreational fishing community assisted in retrieving more than 4,000 abandoned crab traps.

After two highly successful years and the removal of 9,700 derelict crab traps, the Commission and the Department aim to keep up the momentum by scheduling the following five closure areas in 2019.

1. Upper Barataria basin and adjacent marshes west of Port Sulphur - 12 a.m. Friday, February 1, 2019, through 11:59 p.m. Thursday, February 14, 2019.

2. Lake Pontchartrain, west of the Lake Pontchartrain Causeway - 12 a.m. Friday, February 1, 2019, through 11:59 p.m. Sunday, February 10, 2019. 

3. Terrebonne Basin, in an area east of Four League Bay to Bayou Grand Caillou - 12 a.m. Friday, February 15, 2018, through 11:59 p.m. Thursday, February 28, 2019.

4. Pontchartrain Basin, in an area east of the Mississippi River to Bayou Terre Aux Boeufs -12 a.m. Friday, February 15, 2019, through 11:59 p.m. Thursday, February 28, 2019.

5. Sabine Basin, within the area from the LA/TX state line easterly to a point east of Vinton - 12 a.m. Wednesday, March 13, 2019, through 11:59 p.m. Friday, March 22, 2019.

Barataria Basin Crab Trap Removal

The use of crab traps shall be prohibited for a 14-day period from 12 a.m. February 1, 2019, through 11:59 p.m. February 14, 2019:

  • From a point originating on the western boundary of the Barataria Waterway (29 degrees 34 minutes 54.52 seconds north latitude, 90 degrees 3 minutes 41.24 seconds west longitude); thence easterly to the intersection of Highway 23 and Reddick Lane (29 degrees 34 minutes 53.36 seconds north latitude, 89 degrees 49 minutes 38.29 seconds west longitude); thence southerly on Highway 23 to the intersection of Caroline Avenue and Highway 23; thence southwesterly to a point where Little Pass and the southern bank of the Freeport Sulphur Canal intersect (29 degrees 27 minutes 19.15 seconds north latitude, 89 degrees 42 minutes 25.96 seconds west longitude); thence southwesterly following the southern bank of the Freeport Sulphur Canal to a point located at 29 degrees 23 minutes 51.08 seconds north latitude, 89 degrees 46 minutes 30.00 seconds west longitude; thence westerly to a point located on the western shore of the Barataria Waterway at 29 degrees 24 minutes 17.19 seconds north latitude, 89 degrees 59 minutes 24.00 seconds west longitude; thence northerly following the western shore of the Barataria Waterway and terminating at the origin.

Western Lake Pontchartrain Crab Trap Removal

The use of crab traps shall be prohibited for a 10-day period from 12 a.m. February 1, 2019, through 11:59 p.m. February 10, 2019:

 

  • From a point of origin where I-55 intersects Pass Manchac (30 degrees 17 minutes 7.08 seconds north latitude, 90 degrees 24 minutes 6.07 seconds west longitude; thence easterly following the northern bank of Pass Manchac to the point where Pass Manchac exits at the northwest bank of Lake Pontchartrain; thence northerly following the bank of Lake Pontchartrain to the south bound lane of the Lake Pontchartrain Causeway (30 degrees 21 minutes 51.75 seconds north latitude, 90 degrees 5 minutes 38.59 seconds west longitude); thence southerly to a point where the Lake Pontchartrain Causeway crosses the Lakefront Trail located at 30 degrees 1 minutes 10.06 seconds north latitude, 90 degrees 9 minutes 17.28 seconds west longitude; thence westerly following the Lakefront Trail along the  south bank of Lake Pontchartrain until it intersects the Duncan Canal (30 degrees 2 minutes 50.56 seconds north latitude, 90 degrees 16 minutes 45.21 seconds west longitude); thence westerly past the Duncan Canal continuing to follow the south bank of Lake Pontchartrain to  a point where I-10 passes over the southern bank of Lake Pontchartrain (30 degrees 3 minutes 21.43 seconds north latitude, 90 degrees 22 minutes 17.79 seconds west longitude); thence westerly on I-10 to the intersection of I-55, thence northerly on I-55 and terminating at the origin.

Terrebonne Basin Crab Trap Removal

The use of crab traps shall be prohibited for a 14-day period from 12 a.m. February 15, 2019, through 11:59 p.m. February 28, 2019:

  • From a point originating at the intersection of the eastern shoreline of Bayou Dularge and the northern shoreline of Falgout Canal (29 degrees 24 minutes 44.098 seconds north latitude, 90 degrees 46 minutes 58.47 seconds west longitude); thence westerly along the northern shoreline of Falgout Canal to Lake de Cade; thence westerly along the northern shoreline of Lake de Cade to the mouth of Bayou de Cade; thence southwesterly along the northern shoreline of Bayou de Cade to Lost Lake; thence westerly along the northern shoreline of Lost Lake to the mouth of Rice Bayou; thence southerly along the western shoreline of Rice Bayou to Blue Hammock Bayou; thence westerly along the  northern shore of Blue Hammock Bayou to Four League Bay; thence southerly along the eastern shoreline of Four League  Bay to the mouth of Oyster Bayou; thence southerly along the eastern shoreline of Oyster Bayou to a point along the inside-outside shrimp line as defined in LAC 76:VII.370 (29 degrees 13 minutes 12.001 seconds north latitude, 91 degrees 07 minutes 48.002 seconds west longitude); thence easterly along the inside-outside shrimp line to the eastern shoreline of Bayou Grand Caillou; thence northerly along the eastern shoreline of Bayou Grand Caillou to 29 degrees 15 minutes 00 seconds north latitude; thence westerly across Bayou Grand Caillou to the northern shoreline of the Tennessee Gas Pipeline canal; thence westerly  along the northern shoreline of the Tennessee Gas Pipeline canal to the eastern shore of Bayou Dularge; thence northerly along the eastern shoreline of Bayou Dularge and terminating at its origin.

South Pontchartrain Basin Crab Trap Removal

The use of crab traps shall be prohibited for a 14-day period from 12 a.m. February 15, 2019, through 11:59 p.m. February 28, 2019:

 

  • From a point  of originating along the eastern shoreline of the Mississippi River at 29 degrees 46 minutes 11.835 seconds north latitude; thence westerly along 29 degrees 46 minutes 11.835 seconds north latitude to its intersection with the eastern bank of Bayou Terre Aux Boeufs at 29 degrees 46 minutes 11.835 seconds north latitude, 89 degrees 47 minutes 20.53 seconds west longitude; thence southerly along the eastern bank of Bayou Terre Aux Boeufs to  29 degrees 41 minutes 15.19 seconds north latitude, 89 degrees 38 minutes 00 seconds west longitude; thence southerly along 89 degrees 38 minutes 00 seconds west longitude to 29 degrees 34 minutes 12 seconds north latitude, 89 degrees 38 minutes 00 seconds west longitude; thence westerly along 29 degrees 34 minutes 12 seconds north latitude to 29 degrees 34 minutes 12.00 seconds north latitude, 89 degrees 42 minutes 36 seconds west longitude; thence southerly along 89 degrees 42 minutes 36 seconds west longitude to its intersection with the eastern bank of the Mississippi River at 29 degrees 30 minutes 51.57 seconds north latitude, 89 degrees 42 minutes 36.24 seconds west longitude; thence northerly along the eastern bank of the Mississippi River to its point of origin.

 

Sabine Basin Crab Trap Removal

 

The use of crab traps shall be prohibited for a 10-day period from 12 a.m. March 13, 2019, through 11:59 p.m. March 22, 2019:

 

  • From a point originating at the Louisiana/Texas state line at 29 degrees 57 minutes 00 seconds north latitude, 93 degrees 48 minutes 29.67 seconds west longitude; thence northerly along the Louisiana/Texas state line to its intersection with the southernmost east bound lane on Interstate 10; thence northeasterly along the southernmost east bound lane on Interstate 10 to 30 degrees 11 minutes 15.16 seconds north latitude, 93 degrees 33 minutes 18 seconds west longitude; thence southerly along 93 degrees 33 minutes 18 seconds west longitude to 29 degrees 57 minutes 00 seconds north latitude, 93 degrees 33 minutes 18.00 seconds west longitude; thence westerly along 29 degrees 57 minutes 00 seconds north latitude to its point of origin.

For maps of the 2019 designated closure areas, visit http://www.wlf.louisiana.gov/fishing/derelict-crab-trap-removal.

All crab traps remaining in the closed area during the specified period will be considered abandoned.

In the weeks leading up to the closure, LDWF will mail notices to all licensed recreational and commercial crab trap license holders and crab buyers within affected parishes as well as non-resident licensed crab fishermen who fish Louisiana waters and reside in Texas.

These proposed trap removal regulations do not provide authorization for access to private property. Authorization to access private property can only be provided by individual landowners.

Crab traps may be removed only between one half-hour before sunrise to one half-hour after sunset. Only LDWF or those designated by LDWF will be authorized to remove derelict crab traps in the closure areas. Abandoned traps must be brought to LDWF designated disposal sites and may not be taken from the closed area.

Interested persons may submit written comments relative to the proposed rule to Peyton Cagle, Marine Fisheries Biologist DCL-B, Marine Fisheries Section, 1213 N. Lakeshore Dr., Lake Charles, LA 70601, or via e-mail to: peyton.cagle@la.gov prior to November 28, 2018.