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Shrimp boat in background with brown pelicans perched on pilings in foreground in the Mississippi River Gulf Outlet at Shell Beach, in St. Bernard Parish, Louisiana

Local Conservation Group and Louisiana Fishermen Show Devastating Effects of Industrial Menhaden Fishing

Louisiana’s fragile coastal ecosystem continues to be threatened by industrial menhaden fishing. In 2019, our partners over at the Theodore Roosevelt Conservation Partnership’s Center for Marine Fisheries said the bycatch and lost revenue could undermine local revenue into the billions of dollars. Anglers and fishermen have been catching the effects on video and the TRCP gives an astonishing estimate of what’s already been lost and what is at risk.

A Gulf of Mexico menhaden fishery, with large commercial receiving ships harvesting menhaden along Louisiana’s coast and marshes, increasingly threatens the state’s fragile marine ecosystem and its economy (with recreational fishing contributing $1 billion annually to Louisiana, according to National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration statistics).

That’s the essence of concerns shared with SF by Chris Macaluso, director of the Theodore Roosevelt Conservation Partnership’s Center for Marine Fisheries. Among those concerns — beyond the still-undetermined impact of continually removing a huge biomass of menhaden from these waters — is bycatch by the pogy boats.

Read more at Sport Fishing Magazine.