Commercial Fishing

Louisiana Commercial Fishermen

Commercial fishing is a crucial part of the heritage, culture and commerce along Louisiana’s coast.  Our state is home to the most productive seafood industry in the lower 48—about 1 billion pounds of seafood, on average, is landed in Louisiana each year for commercial sale, with an estimated dockside value of $300 million.  Louisiana seafood fuels our economy, and feeds a global population.

Commercial fishing is both a science and an art.  The ‘art’ of commercial fishing can only be learned through doing—reading the tides, locating good spots for catch, experimenting to find the gear and bait that works for you.  But this is only one part of the commercial fisherman’s business.  Our goal, through Louisiana Fisheries Forward, is to help fishermen understand the ‘science’ of fishing—the business trends, new technologies and equipment, and regulatory rules and policies that lead to financial success AND resource preservation.

The curriculum included here covers a wide variety of topics to help commercial fishermen understand licensing and permitting requirements, trip tickets and federal reporting, receiving, handling and storing catch, and responsible and safe fishing.

Be sure to check out the video, download our Fast Facts, and visit the resource links below for the full picture of how to be a successful commercial fisherman; and check back often for updates to this page.

This video is for educational purposes only.  Watching this video does not fulfill the basic requirements for the LDWF Commercial Crab Gear Requirement; for more information visit:

shorebirds and pelican in shallow water at Grand Isle
shrimp boats at pier

Fisheries management in Louisiana is firmly rooted in science.  Biologists with LDWF, Sea Grant and NOAA monitor environmental conditions, species populations, and other biological data to determine seasons, catch limits, gear requirements, handling practices and more.  We are determined to work together with fishermen to maintain healthy fish populations and habitat for the benefit of all.

Latest Commercial Fishing News

People returning derlict crab traps

LDWF Plans Six Crab Trap Closures Along Louisiana Coast for 2024

August 3, 2023

At today’s meeting, the Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries Commission (LWFC) adopted a Notice of Intent (NOI) allowing the removal of derelict crab traps along Louisiana’s coast in 2024 from the six following described areas: The first closure will occur in the Pontchartrain Basin, between southern Lake Borgne and the eastern…

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Louisiana commercial fishing

Louisiana’s Fishing Disaster Determination Wins Federal Support

June 26, 2023

Today, Secretary of Commerce Gina M. Raimondo announced that the agency supports Louisiana’s request that a fishing disaster be declared for portions of the state’s saltwater finfish, oyster, and shrimping industries due to revenue losses caused by the 2020 hurricanes. The announcement, made in concert with the National Oceanic and…

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