Posted: Jun 29, 2012 4:23 PM by kATC
Updated: Jun 29, 2012 4:57 PM
Less than 48 hours after U.S. Representatives Jeff Landry (R, LA-03) and Steve Southerland (R, FL-02) led an effort requesting the 2012 Gulf of Mexico Recreational Red Snapper Season be extended, NOAA filed a rule to extend the season.
"As South Louisiana's representative, I know that the 40-day red snapper season is a window too short and one being made shorter by the summer's devastating weather," said Landry, a member of the U. "I am grateful for NOAA's decision as it will go a long way toward relieving the crippling economic burden facing our fishermen and businesses that rely on the season for increased tourism and revenue."
The extension goes into effect from 12:01 AM, local time, July 11, 2012, until 12:01 AM, local time, July 17, 2012. The season will then be closed until it reopens on June 1, 2013, the beginning of the 2013 recreational fishing season.
Wind speed and wave height data from four buoys stationed throughout the Gulf of Mexico were used as proxies for determining days when fishing did not occur or when effort was reduced. Wave height was the most consistent difference between 2011 and 2012. Days with wave heights greater than 4 feet was used as the proxy to indicate fishing days lost. Weather was not as much of a factor in the western Gulf of Mexico, and this was considered in the calculations as well. Assuming weather in the eastern Gulf of Mexico will improve, and fishing effort returns to expected rates, NOAA Fisheries Service projects the recreational fishing season for the entire Gulf of Mexico can be extended an additional six days.
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