First part of Mississippi oyster season ends after 4 days

AP File Photo

BILOXI, Miss. (AP) – Oyster season is over in part of the Mississippi Sound, only four days after it began.

The Mississippi Department of Marine Resources announced that it had closed a reef in Biloxi Bay Thursday afternoon after it had opened Monday.

Oystermen tonged up 657 sacks, equivalent to 30 percent of the oysters on the small reef where fishing was allowed for only the second time since 1964.

Department spokeswoman Melissa Scallan says the state has cut oyster limits in an attempt to rebuild its depleted oyster beds. However, shellfish take time to grow, and conditions have been challenging.

Larger reefs around Pass Christian will open Nov. 13, but the harvest still won’t be bountiful. The state plans to allow 10,000 sacks to be produced this year, down from 500,000 in 2004.

(Copyright 2017 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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