Crawfish Season in Louisiana Is Nearly Over for 2014
The Louisiana crawfish season only has a couple more weeks to go.
As the hot summer temperatures arrive, demand for mudbugs drops off and crawfish begin to crawl back into the mud to lay eggs and get away from the heat.
Crawfish farmers have already started draining their ponds. You will still be able to find wild crawfish on the market, though.
As the Atchafalaya River Basin, where most wild crawfish are caught, continues to drop in the coming weeks, fewer trappers will harvest those waters.
Jody Meche of Henderson, La., tells Nola.com that he hopes to continue harvesting the basin for crawfish through August. But he would be one of the few.
"When our water levels are at their height, at the peak of our season, we have as much as 2,000 licensed crawfish fishermen out here," said Meche, a Henderson councilman who also serves as vice-president of the Louisiana Crawfish Promotion and Research Board.
Larger retailers expect to have some crawfish into August, but smaller seafood markets likely will stop selling mudbugs by July 4 or earlier.
Prices range in the Shreveport Bossier area from 1.99 to 2.99 per pound for live crawfish, and between 3.99 and 4.99 for boiled. In New Orleans and Baton Rouge prices range from as low as $1.70 per pound for live crawfish to as high as about $3 per pound for boiled crawfish.
How have crawfish farmers done this year?
"We broke even and made a little something because the season actually picked up really nice at the end of April, in May and early June," said Stephen Minvielle, director of the Louisiana Crawfish Promotion and Research Board and the Louisiana Crawfish Farmer's Association.