Cool temps affect crawfish prices - KPLC 7 News, Lake Charles, Louisiana

Cool temps affect crawfish prices

JEFF DAVIS PARISH, LA (KPLC) -

Crawfish boils are a Good Friday tradition for many. 

This year, cooler temperatures are causing crawfish to go back into a molting cycle. This means the crawfish become inactive while they shed a shell and wait for a new shell to harden.

The inactive crawfish mean farmers are catching less during a time when the demand is high.

"We started out this week strong and the temperatures dropped in the 30s Monday morning," crawfish farmer Burt Tietje said. "My production in this pond dropped off by 43 percent between Monday and Thursday."

He said this is normally a time of the year where farmers see an increase in crawfish activity, rather than a decrease.

"Don't confuse the warm air temperature and the warm sunshine this afternoon with what's happening in the water," Tietje said. "It is still cold down there. It is around 58 degrees in the water right now."

So, while the price for crawfish is high for the farmer, they aren't catching the crawfish this week.

Tietje said, "We aren't going to be able to supply the crawfish that we would like to supply for this very high demand week."

However, he assures crawfish lovers that they will return bigger and better.

"I can almost guarantee you that on the Monday following Easter every crawfish pond in Southwest Louisiana is going to have its biggest day of production," he said.

Copyright 2013 KPLC. All rights reserved.

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