Tag Archives: Lake Pontchartrain

Lake Pontchartrain is crawling with crabs again, and it has the January opening of the Bonnet Carre Spillway to thank

20885669-mmmainGary Bauer, owner of Pontchartrain Blue Crab in Slidell, said crab production was abysmal in Lake Pontchartrain for three straight years, but it’s rebounded in 2016. “When I fished for a living, when the spillway was open, you knew you were going to have crabs for the next year or two,” he said. “The old-timers consider that fresh layer of silt to be like fertilizer.” A New Orleans East native, Bauer crabbed from 1979 through 1994, and opened his factory in 1999. He said both the quality and quantity of crabs have been better this year. “Lake Pontchartrain and Lake Borgne have been way off, and this year it’s been an improvement,” Bauer said. “We’re not out of the woods yet, but there is definitely an improvement.” Bauer said some fishers pull right up to his dock to sell their catch, but he also buys crabs from wholesalers based around the coast. “A lot of people who used to fish here have moved on to greener pastures, where the crab production has been better,” he said. “The first five years we were in business, we had only one truck. Now we have four. That tells you where the crabs have been coming from.” Read the story here 14:06