Participation up as Miss. shrimp season starts

BILOXI, Mississippi — The number of boats in Mississippi waters was up from last year for the first day of shrimping season, but as predicted, the catches were small, according to a news release from the state Department of Marine Resources.

The season opened Tuesday at 6 a.m. after sampling confirmed shrimp have reached the 68-count-per-pound state statute requirement.

According to the DMR Shrimp and Crab Bureau’s aerial survey, shrimp effort increased on opening day, with 250 shrimp boats counted in Mississippi waters, compared to 210 boats observed last year.

Boats were concentrated north of East Ship Island, about 60, and scattered along the shoreline mostly to the east.

As predicted based on intensive sampling prior to the season opening, heavy rains in April and May that reduced salinity contributed to smaller catches reported earlier this morning.

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