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Fishermen fear crawfish at risk with Morganza Spillway opening

1 month 3 weeks 2 days ago Monday, May 27 2019 May 27, 2019 May 27, 2019 7:01 PM May 27, 2019 in News
Source: WBRZ

IBERVILLE PARISH - With the Morganza Spillway scheduled to open this weekend, local fishermen are worried about the effects it may have on trapping crawfish.

Mitch Collier catches between thirty to forty sacks of crawfish during a normal season, but this year is a little different.

"Usually this time of year, last year, the crawfish were running good but now they are not doing nothing," Collier said.

He believes backwater flooding making its way to Bayou Pigeon may be the reason.

"We can't catch hardly a sack in here. We don't know why maybe the water stayed up too long," Collier said.

The high water is forcing him to raise his traps even higher or risk losing them. For Collier, this is all too similar to 2011.

"I think we had to raise our strings up to like 25 feet in the trees."

This year, it's a waiting game to see how high he will have to reach to keep his livelihood going.

"This time we may have to raise them once if they don't give us two feet, but we already raised them," Collier said.

With the Morganza Spillway planned to open Sunday, Collier is on edge.

"And now we are going to get more water, and you still got to get water from the snow melt... And it's no telling how much water we are going to get, because it has not gone down."

And like many others, he questions why it took so long for officials to take action.

"They should have put that barge three months ago, why wait until the last minute," he expressed.

Collier has 400 traps in three spots, hoping to catch more crawfish. But for now, it's just a waiting game he hopes doesn't take a turn for the worse.

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