The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries, in coordination with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, ordered an emergency reopening of commercial crabbing in areas west of Southwest Pass of the Mississippi River that were previously closed because of the BP Deepwater Horizon oil spill.
Effective immediately, all state inside and outside territorial waters west of Southwest Pass of the Mississippi River and 89 degrees 25 minutes 00 seconds west longitude are open to the commercial harvest of crabs.
LDWF Secretary Robert Barham ordered these reopenings following the completion of comprehensive testing by the FDA. The FDA advised that, following extensive sensory testing and analytical chemistry results, the crab samples tested from previously closed areas are safe for consumption.
The following areas remain closed to all commercial fishing, including commercial crabbing, until further notice:
All Louisiana commercial fishing closures including commercial crab closures east of Southwest Pass of the Mississippi River remain unchanged. LDWF does anticipate FDA approval to reopen commercial crabbing in this area within days.