Past Decisions Show Conservation Groups Won’t Give Up on Menhaden Oversight

In 2020, the Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries Commission voted down creating an exclusion zone that would help protect Louisiana’s coast from industrial menhaden fishing. These zones exist in every U.S. state except Louisiana, and still, these states’ industrial fishing operations are still thriving and in some cases doing better than before.  This highlights the commission’s decision.


A growing conflict over Louisiana’s but largest but perhaps least-known commercial fishery came to a head this week when state leaders rejected a plan to restrict large-scale menhaden fishing near the state’s coastline.

The Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries Commission on Thursday voted down a proposal backed by recreational fishing and conservation groups that would have established a menhaden fishing “exclusion zone” to protect the fragile coastal habitat and marine species from the long nets and large vessels operated by the menhaden fishing industry. The zone, which would have extended one mile out along the entire Louisiana coastline, mirrored restrictions enacted in other states, including Mississippi and Alabama.


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