The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) announced that 50 percent of the state’s annual private recreational red snapper allocation has been harvested.
“LA Creel, LDWF’s near real-time landings data collection program, indicates that 422,561 pounds of Louisiana’s 2021 annual private recreational allocation of 832,493 pounds have been harvested to date,” LDWF reported in a news release yesterday.
Private recreational red snapper season will continue to run on weekends (and Labor Day), with a bag limit of two, minimum 16-inch total length, fish per person, until recreational landings approach or reach Louisiana’s allocation. If recreational harvests exceed the annual quota, any excess is deducted from Louisiana’s allocation for the following season.
How do stock assessments work?
Most of the Gulf’s annual red snapper allocation is consumed in state waters. For instance, in the 2017 recreational red snapper season, NOAA predicted that 81 percent of its target would be caught during state recreational seasons.
When calculating stock assessments, NOAA Fisheries uses data collected by LDWF via LA Creel and independent data collected by scientists.
Most red snapper are harvested on platforms and other artificial structures. These landings are reported to NOAA Fisheries, and contribute to the state’s estimated catch. Additionally, commercial landings on platforms and artificial reefs are reported.
LDWF also participates in surveys each year conducted by the Southeast Area Monitoring and Assessment Program (SEAMAP). In the program, researchers use vertical long-lines to sample red snapper in different stages of development. The samples are gathered at oil and gas platforms, artificial reefs, and other areas in the Gulf, and are used in NOAA’s assessments.
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