BILOXI, Miss. (WLOX) - By Father’s Day, Coast seafood lovers are usually enjoying fresh gulf shrimp from Mississippi waters.
But The Department of Marine Resources (DMR) has not opened the 2019 shrimp season because the shrimp just are not big enough. Experts point to the opening of the Bonnet Carre Spillway as impacting the shrimp in Mississippi waters.
DMR scientists have been taking counts for weeks now. Rick Burris with the DMR Shrimp and Crab Bureau says the brown shrimp are growing very slowly this year. In fact, in some cases, some newer shrimp samples are smaller than previous ones. Burris says normally, DMR can estimate how fast shrimp will reach legal size, which determines when shrimpers can drop their nets. .
Burris says another issue is there seems to be fewer shrimp out there.
DMR samples ten locations in the Mississippi Sound twice a week. Tuesday at the Commission on Marine Resources meeting, we’ll learn more on the prospects for the 2019 shrimp season and the impact of the spillway on Mississippi Waters.