The shrimping industry plays a significant role in the coastal regions of Georgia, South Carolina, and North Carolina. Shrimp are abundant in the inland and coastal waters and shrimpers supply restaurants, fish markets, and the nation with fresh crustaceans to serve to family and friends. Shrimping requires knowledge of finding, catching, storing, selling, and maintaining shrimping vessels. Here is what to know about a shrimp boat and the shrimping industry. 

What Is A Shrimp Boat

A shrimping vessel is a trawler watercraft. Trawlers drag fishing nets, and the most common type of shrimp trawler contains outriggers. 

Outriggers of a trawler manipulate from an up and stowed position to a down and side engaged position. The outriggers contain nets that deploy on the port and starboard side when lowered and engaged. Commercial shrimpers trawl nets, particularly during low tide on inland and coastal waters of Georgia, South Carolina, and North Carolina. After the net has become full of shrimp boy trolling between two and five miles an hour, a cap stand hauls the bounty back onboard the vessel. 

Chilled storage space are fundamental in the operation. Trawlers incorporate chilled storage compartments into the design. The storage compartments maintain freshness of the delicate crustacean to receive top market dollar. 

Remember, commercial shrimp vessels must carry a fishing license, abide by the regulations, and most importantly, know where to find shrimp to become profitable. In Georgia, South Carolina, and North Carolina, the primary target is white shrimp, followed by brown shrimp.

How Much Does A Shrimp Boat Make A Year

The operating costs of a shrimping operation are expensive. The vessel and gear are substantial invesements in the operation.

Shrimping vessels range in size. The larger vessel incurs higher operating costs when compared to small shrimping boats, but it becomes balanced based on the quantity of shrimp caught per outing. On average, shrimpers haul between fourteen and forty-five thousand pounds per fourteen-day trip. 

Most often, the captain owns the vessel and fishing operation who receives on average sixty to sixty-five percent of the profit. The profits range between forty and one hundred eighty thousand dollars per year. 

How Does A Shrimp Boat Work

A shrimp boat operates twenty-four-seven after departing the dock. Captains focus on areas with high concentrations of shrimp by dragging trawling nets and capturing thousands of pounds of shrimp per day. 

The crew works hard deploying, retrieving, and placing shrimp in storage bins to maximize freshness. Shrimp vessel operations require teamwork. The crew requires food and sleep is while shrimp are caught simultaneously.

Check out the answers to common shrimp questions

Do Shrimp Boats Work At Night

Yes, shrimp boats work twenty-four hours per day. A commercial shrimping vessel harvests shrimp from coastal water in the daylight and the darkness. Bright lights are fitted on the trawler’s upper portion, which shines down towards the deck and aft behind the boat.

The purpose of the lights is to allow the crew to winch and chill freshly caught shrimp at all hours of the day. The operation extends for up to two weeks, depending on the onboard storage. Vessels fitted with coolers remain on the water longer than those with ice chests. The pace is grueling, and shrimpers require catching up on sleep once they return, clean, and sell the fresh catch. 

How Many People Are On A Shrimp Boat

The average shrimp boat in Georgia, South Carolina, and North Carolina depart the dock with two to four crew members on board. One of the crew members is the captain, who fills the role of operating the vessel safely and locating shrimp. The deckhands are responsible for handling fishing gear, discarding bycatch, and stowing the freshly caught shrimp. 

Can You Catch Shrimp From Shore

Yes, shrimp are caught from shore in Georgia, South Carolina, and North Carolina. Anglers can catch shrimp with cast nets from docks. Low tide in shallow waters is ideal for catching shrimp, where they gather in clusters.

 Keep in mind that most shrimp caught in proximity to docks are brown shrimp compared to white shrimp. Brown shrimp do not grow as large and are less flavorful. Brown shrimp are most often used for bait. 

Now You Understand The Operations Of A Shrimp Boat

The shrimping industry is complex and requires extensive knowledge and licensing. Shrimpers work long, hard hours to keep up with the demand of the shrimp market. Shrimp find their way into restaurants, seafood markets, and grocery stores worldwide. The next time you order or purchase shrimp, think of the efforts made to catch and deliver fresh seafood to your table.