Mackerel Season To Close September 12

LAKE CHARLES, LA (KLPC):

The commercial season for king mackerel in Louisiana waters will close at noon on Saturday, Sept. 12, 2009.  The decision was made by Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) Secretary Robert Barham.

At its January 2009 meeting, the Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries Commission gave the Secretary Barham the authority to close the commercial season for king mackerel in Louisiana state waters when informed that the designated portion of the commercial king mackerel quota has been filled, or was projected to be filled.  Acting on information from LDWF biologists, the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), Secretary Barham signed a declaration of emergency for the closure.

The closure in Louisiana state waters will be concurrent with the closure of the commercial king mackerel fishery in federal waters of the Gulf of Mexico off of Louisiana.

Each year a commercial quota is established for Gulf group king mackerel by NMFS based on recommendations by the Gulf and South Atlantic Fishery Management Councils.  That figure is then divided into allocations for various zones and fisheries.  According to the best information available, the 1.01 million pound commercial quota of king mackerel for the western zone will be harvested by Sept. 12, 2009.