If you’re looking to make a red snapper trip this summer, you better hurry.
Nothing is certain at this point, but it’s at least possible that Louisiana’s snapper fishermen could be enjoying their last weekend of the extended recreational season.
Numbers released Friday morning by the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries now indicate 87 percent of the state’s recreational allocation of 743,000 pounds has been caught.
LA Creel, the data collection program that tracks the estimated harvested in almost real-time, now calculates 651,495 pounds of snapper have been landed by recreational fishermen through July 29.
That’s a big increase of more than 121,000 pounds since the previous week’s estimate that ended on July 22. In last week’s report, 71 percent of the allocation had been reached — the new figure represents a 16-percent jump.
And because fishing is ongoing this weekend, that means fish harvested from July 30 through this Sunday have not been added into the harvest estimate yet.
Rene LeBreton, public information director for the LDWF, wouldn’t venture a guess on when the season might close because weekly harvest projections have varied, but he did say Secretary Jack Montoucet had been given the authority by the Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries Commission to close the season when the recreational harvest limit was approached or reached.
In an email, LeBreton said the spike in the harvest during the week of July 29 was not attributable to any specific event or rodeo.
For more information on the 2018 red snapper season and detailed landing estimates, click here.