Today, the Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries Commission set the 2013/2014 oyster seasons based on the annual oyster stock assessment provided by Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries biologists and comments received from members of the public, including the oyster industry.
The following opening dates were set for the upcoming oyster season:
- Wednesday, September 4, 2013 – the Little Lake, Barataria Bay, Deep Lake, Lake Tambour, and Vermilion/East and West Cote Blanche/Atchafalaya Bay Public Oyster Seed Grounds will open at one-half hour before sunrise.
- Tuesday, October 15, 2013 – all remaining public oyster seed grounds and reservations, including Lake Borgne, Sister Lake, Lake Mechant, the Lake Machias/Fortuna sacking-only area and the Bay Long sacking-only area, will open at one-half hour before sunrise.
- Friday, November 1, 2013 – the oyster season in the west cove portion of the Calcasieu Lake Public Oyster Area (DHH Harvest Area 30) will open at one-half hour before sunrise. The sack limit during this time period is set at 10 sacks per person, per vessel, per day.
The following areas will remain closed for the 2013/2014 oyster season:
- Bay Gardene Public Oyster Seed Reservation
- Bay Junop Public Oyster Seed Reservation
- Lake Chien and Lake Felicity Public Oyster Seed Grounds
- 2011 clutch plants in Mississippi Sound and California Bay,
- 2012 cultch plants in Hackberry Bay, Sister Lake, Lake Fortuna, and Bay Crab
- 2013 cultch plants in 3-Mile Pass and Drum Bay,
- The east side of the Calcasieu Lake Public Oyster Area (LDHH Harvest Area 29)
- Sabine Lake Public Oyster Area
Closure dates will be determined by LDWF Secretary Barham on an “as needed” basis, based on biological and harvest data, or if enforcement issues are encountered. The Secretary is also authorized to take emergency action to reopen areas previously closed if the threat to the resource has ended, and to open areas if substantial oyster resources are located.
Public notice of any opening, delay, or closure of a season will be provided at least 72 hours prior to such action, unless such closure is ordered by the Louisiana Department of Health and Hospitals for public health concerns.
Logo courtesy Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries