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Home > Projects > Completed Projects > FAQs > Harvesting Wild Crawfish

FAQs: HARVESTING WILD CRAWFISH

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Do I qualify as a crawfish harvester?

A crawfish harvester is a person who harvests wild crawfish commercially without participating in the growing of crawfish.

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License Requirements:

In order to harvest wild crawfish, one must hold two licenses: a commercial fisherman’s license and a commercial crawfish trap license.

The commercial fisherman license allows the permit holder to land crawfish and other seafood species. The license costs $55.00 for residents and $460.00 for non-residents.

The commercial crawfish trap license allows the commercial fisherman to deploy and harvest any number of legal crawfish traps. This license costs $25.00 for residents and $100.00 for non-residents.

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Reporting Requirements:

Commercial fisherman must provide trip tickets for all sales of wild commercial seafood. Trip tickets include details regarding the type of species, the volume of the harvest in pounds, the dollar value and the area from which the harvest was taken.

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Season:

The State of Louisiana does not have a defined crawfish season. Licensed commercial fisherman can harvest crawfish using legally acceptable methods throughout the year.

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Trap Requirements:

Crawfish may be taken commercially with approved crawfish traps. The openings of the flues or throats on crawfish traps shall not exceed two inches.

For the east side portion of the Atchafalaya Basin extending from Morgan City at the Intracoastal Canal to I-10, commercial wild crawfish traps must have a minimum mesh size of ¾ of 1 inch.

Louisiana wild crawfish harvesters are not required to affix tags identifying ownership on their crawfish traps.

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Jurisdiction:

Crawfish harvesters are subject to the rules and regulations of the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries and the Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries Commission.

The Wildlife and Fisheries Commission promulgates the rules and regulations relating to the seasons, times, places, size limits, quotas, daily take and possession limits for all wildlife and fish. These rules aim to conserve, preserve, replenish and manage the species for continuing social and economic benefit to the state.

The Secretary of the Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) has the authority to close or alter seasons in order to protect fish and wildlife resources. The LDWF also has the authority to supervise the harvest in special cases such as Wildlife Management Areas.

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