BILOXI, MS (WLOX) - The race for shrimp is about to begin in South Mississippi's waters. The Mississippi Department of Marine Resources set the opening date of the 2015-2016 shrimp season in state territorial waters for this Wednesday.
One man is getting his shrimping gear ready for the big day. Sam Sisavath cleans his boat the April Dawn in preparation to head out on the high seas on June 3.
"Clean up the boat, painting, then just check everything is ready to go out," said Sisavath.
The experienced shrimper has logged many hours in the Gulf casting a net for shrimp.
"I just like to shrimp," said Sisavath.
Sisavath said going after shrimp requires preparation, if not, he and his crew could get stuck out at sea. That's why he spent the last month down in his boat's engine room, where he installed a new starter, added batteries to his generator and did maintenance on his engine. And none of that comes cheap. Just like any other moving vessel his requires fuel and a lot of it.
"Six hundred gallons at about $1,800 to fill it up, lasts about four days," he said.
In addition, to the fuel just one bucket of paint for his boat costs $70 which is why he's ready to see his nets blossom in the water and fill buckets with some tasty crustaceans.
His competitors, all docked at the Small Craft Harbor, are praying for a good season and good weather.
"Ah, good weather like not to windy and not a lot of rain. It's not good for shrimping, if it's a lot of rain because of the fresh water coming down," he added.
Again shrimp season begins Wednesday June 3 at 6 a.m.
All boats taking part in catching or transporting shrimp from Mississippi waters must be licensed or permitted by DMR before beginning shrimping. For more information call MS Shrimp Hotline at 866-938-7295.