Time is running out to sign up to participate in the 2022 derelict crab trap rodeo events. Two events are scheduled for this year: one in the Barataria Basin and one in the Calcasieu Basin (more details below).
These rodeo events allow LDWF and members of the public to work hand-in-hand removing derelict crab traps that create navigational hazards. These traps lead to ghost-fishing mortality of blue crabs and other species which can be captured incidentally, interfere with other commercial fishing gear types, and degrade the beauty of our natural environment.
In the past, LDWF, Lake Pontchartrain Basin Foundation, volunteers, Barataria-Terrebonne National Estuary Program (BTNEP), Coastal Conservation Association (CCA) of Louisiana, universities, Louisiana Sea Grant, LSU AgCenter, the American Daughters of Conservation, Fenstermaker, the Coalition to Restore Coastal Louisiana (CRCL), Cameron Parish Port Harbor and Terminal District, and members of the recreational and commercial fishing community assisted in retrieving more than 50,000 abandoned crab traps. Typically, the highest daily number of derelict crab traps are removed from a basin during these volunteer rodeo events.
LDWF encourages volunteers to participate in these events to make this crab trap rodeo a success and keep our Sportsman’s Paradise pristine. Volunteers will help collect traps in the field, unload traps at the dock, and count traps as they are unloaded. Commercial fishermen are highly encouraged to participate, as their experience with the local waters and ability to stack traps on their vessels is valuable.
Removing abandoned crab traps is a wet and dirty job, so please wear appropriate clothing and water-resistant gear. Volunteers should bring their own personal floatation device, which should be worn at all times while on the water. Lunch will be provided to all volunteers as a small token of appreciation for their help to keep our waterways free and clean of derelict crab traps.
- Barataria Basin: A dedicated volunteer day will be held on Saturday, February 12, 2022, from 8:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. at Jean Lafitte Harbor located at 4932 Kenal Road Lafitte, LA 70067. You may contact Peyton Cagle at 337-491-2575 or [email protected] for directions. To better coordinate volunteer activities, volunteers are encouraged to register in advance at the following website:
- Calcasieu Basin: A dedicated volunteer day will be held on Saturday, February 19, 2022, from 8:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. at the Sabine National Wildlife Refuge West Cove Public Launch (north side). The launch is approcimately 3.5 miles south of the Sabine National Wildlife Refuge Admin Building and Visitor Contact Station at 3000 Holly Beach Highway Hackberry, LA 70645. You may contact Peyton Cagle at 337-491-2575 or [email protected] for directions. To better coordinate volunteer activities, volunteers are encouraged to register in advance at the following website:
Anyone that has recently been exposed to someone with COVID-19 or anyone experiencing any COVID-19 symptoms themselves, must not attend the event.
Crab traps may be removed only between one half-hour before sunrise to one half-hour after sunset. Only LDWF, or those designated by LDWF, will be authorized to remove derelict crab traps in the closure areas. Abandoned traps must be brought to LDWF designated disposal sites and may not be taken from the closed area.
Maps of the closure areas can be found here.
For more information on the Derelict Crab Trap Removal Program, go to http://www.wlf.louisiana.gov/fishing/derelict-crab-trap-removal, or contact Peyton Cagle at 337-491-2575or [email protected].