By Gaige Davila
Two eleven-inch tiger shrimp, or giant tiger prawns (penaeus monodon) were caught off the Louisiana coast by a shrimp boat captained by Frankie Perez, operating out of Twin City Shrimp Company in Port Isabel. The shrimp were caught in 28 fathoms of water (168 feet).
Tiger shrimp have a distinctive black and white banding across their rusty-brown colored backs and can grow 12 inches long.
The shrimp are native to East Africa, South Asia, the Philippines, and Australia, making their presence in the Gulf of Mexico non-native. The first recorded presence of tiger shrimp in Texas coasts was in 2011 in Aransas Bay, with the most recent recorded catch, according to the U.S. Geological Survey, in 2015 in Galveston Bay. Tiger shrimp have been found nine times between 2007 and 2019 in Louisiana.
Tiger shrimp were first found in United States coasts in 1988, after tiger shrimp were among the 2,000 animals accidentally released into the ocean from a South Carolina aquaculture facility. Nearly 300 tiger shrimp were found off the coasts of South Carolina, Georgia and Florida in the three months after the accidental release.
Tiger shrimp are considered an invasive species and their farming is prohibited in Texas