Tag Archives: USA

Ever wondered what it’s like for a Shrimper in L.A?

Shrimping boatWhen I think of shrimpers, the first thing that comes to my mind is Forest Gump. However, the Anna Marie probably isn’t your typical shrimp boat. It has boat air-conditioning, a full sized kitchen and satellite television. Lance Nacio, the boat’s captain, can check water depth, plot his course and test tidal flows, all from his captain’s chair and a slick gadget. However, the most unusual addition to the Anna Marie, is a set of high-tech plate freezers on the deck. Compared to a traditional shrimp boat, the Anna Marie can stay out at sea up to three times longer, pulling in as much as 16,000 pounds on each journey.

Nacio, grew up shrimping the traditional way that southern Louisianians have for generations; he caught what he could with his net and sold it fresh on the dock to middlemen at the market price. Today, he catches and processes the shrimp himself and sets his own price. He also negotiates prices himself and offers samples to celebrity food chefs while he’s out on the water. His customers include various restaurants and Whole Food Markets and he has set up a sustainable business for the environment and his family.

A customer and chef-owner, Frank Brigsten, said “The shrimping industry in America has been struggling for a long while. Lance saw the writing on the wall,

“He is a visionary in his profession.”

Nacio’s family, made a living from the land, like others on the bayou. They trapped furs, grew their food in the garden and shrimped. After leaving school, Nacio worked in the oil business for almost 10 years, but he didn’t find it as satisfying as shrimping. He said “When you are working in the oil fields, you have a boss, and you’re under pressure all the time,

“When you’re shrimping, you’re your own boss, and you create your own destiny.”

However, it seems that for the last decade, destiny has seemed bleak for many Louisiana shrimpers, though not necessarily for the reasons most consumers might imagine. Of course, hurricanes Rita and Katrina and last year’s BP oil spill affected the predominantly small, family run fisheries. But the real danger is farmed, imported shrimp from South America and Southeast Asia, the shrimp can be produced and shipped cheap enough to transform the product, which was once considered a luxury is now on the all you can eat buffet.

Shrimp is the United States’ number one-seafood import and about 90% of the market, around 1.2 billion pounds is imported yearly.

International competition ramped up in 2001, when there was millions of cheap shrimp into the American market. While shrimper’s main operational cost rose sky high, prices for domestic shrimpers on the dock plummeted.

Nacio says, “A few years earlier, we were paying 60 cents a gallon [for diesel] and we were getting $3 a pound for shrimp,

“Then, all of a sudden, we’re paying $3.10 a gallon and getting just $1.50. A lot of the fishermen worked themselves out of business.”

Prisoner Caught trying to Escape through Air Conditioning System

A prisoner was left dismayed after he was captured just hours after staging an elaborate escape.

Inmate, Leviticus Uriah Taylor, 25, who was being held at India River Country Jail in south-east Florida at the maximum security block, launched his freedom bid with his cellmate Rondell H Reed, 52.

Both men, considered highly dangerous, started their escape on Sunday night by crawling through air conditioning ducts and over 12 ft fences covered in barbed wire.

Reed’s efforts at escaping were successful, however, Taylor was caught just hours after the escape and returned to custody.

Taylor, who was convicted of first degree murder last month and Reed, who is facing a second degree murder charge, both came up with the plan during the five days they were held together in the same cell.

Their escape is thought to have started by breaking into a prison maintenance area, where their overalls were later found.

Next, they both would have had to pass two locked doors before mounting through air con units.

The last part of their prison escape, saw the pair climb a 12 ft high fence protected with barbed wire that surrounds the prison. Blankets were found nearby, which investigators believe were used to protect against the sharp wire.

The prisoners were reported missing on Monday morning at 4.30am. Deryl Loar, Indian River County Sheriff, said Taylor was captured at 7pm that evening, about 15 hours after his escape, in Jensen Beach.

Two women, Sadie Welker, 19, and Angela Pike, 35, have been arrested on suspicion of helping with the escape, since Taylor was returned to jail.

According to Tampa Bay news site WTSO, Welker is Taylor’s girlfriend.

Reed and Taylor were among 19 inmates being held in the prisoner’s maximum security block, said Sheriff Loar.

It is not the first time that Reed has broken free of custody, he escaped from a prison in 1989 in North Carolina, which resulted in a shoot out with the Police.