A favorite on spring menus in Louisiana, crayfish, most commonly known as crawfish in Louisiana, are freshwater crustaceans related to the lobster. The crawfish has been caught in Louisiana ever since the Acadians arrived from Canada in the late 1700s-early 1800s. The fishery has grown ever since and become a Cajun way of life!

  • Habitat: Crayfish thrive in any body of fresh water, including streams, rivers, ponds, lakes and even water-filled ditches. In Louisiana they are both farmed and wild-caught. There are over 160,000 acres of agriculture land dedicated to crawfish farming. The wild-caught crops thrive on the seasonal floods that bring freshwater into the swamps. An example of this type of crawfishing is found in the Atchafalaya Basin when the basin starts to see seasonal high river levels beginning in December.

    With the introduction of more fresh water from the Mississippi River, crawfish crops may increase.
  • Limits: Crawfish may be recreationally harvest in Louisiana using a hexagon wire trap in public water ways with the proper recreational fishing license. Due to the resilient and productive nature of the crawfish, there are no size limits. The crawfish is impacted most by environmental conditions, not overfishing.