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Crawfish could be in short supply for businesses relying on Atchafalaya Basin

6 years 3 months 3 weeks ago Monday, March 19 2018 Mar 19, 2018 March 19, 2018 6:10 PM March 19, 2018 in News
Source: WBRZ

BAYOU SORREL - Crawfishermen working the Atchafalaya Basin are fighting with mother nature to make sure your Easter crop of South Louisiana's most popular crustacean won't be interrupted.

High water is making it tough for fishermen to come back with sacks of crawfish. At least one seafood market owner is turning down orders, since he says his fishermen in the basin can't meet the demand.

"Easter weekend we're going to be short, no doubt," Kelley said. "The price of crawfish is going to go up and it's going to be limited to what you can get."

Johnny Carline has been fishing for the better part of seven decades.

"Mostly seeing five or six in a trap, every trap like this," Carline said.

Today, Carline checked 40 traps and came back with three pounds of crawfish.

Farm raised crawfish in ponds are not affected. However, the wild-caught crawfish in the basin have been tough to find due to the high water levels.

"I have 22 fishermen on the books, a handful went out and they didn't catch anything," Kelley said. "I only bought three sacks of crawfish Saturday."

Although the high water is posing problems right now, the say the excess water in the basin will ultimately be good for the basin.

"The flow of water is good," Kelley said. "A lot of places are getting flushed that haven't been flushed in 20 years."

As for the fishermen, they said they know it will pick up... but it will take some time.

"We will be catching up at the end," Carline said. "We always do."

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