CHARLESTON COUNTY, SC (WCSC) - There could be a drop in local shrimp prices this year.
The South Carolina Department of Natural Resources is predicting a big increase in the number of shrimp.
DNR says the last two years, the local shrimp output has been around 300,000 pounds, but this year, they're predicting more than 500,000 pounds of white shrimp, almost double.
The big reason behind the shortage was the winter weather. This year because of a fairly mild winter, more shrimp could grow.
DNR does studies all throughout the winter and early spring to check on the spawning shrimp.
Shrimping season just started Wednesday and both DNR and shrimpers are hoping the prediction turns out to be true.
"So far it was kind of a slow start, but we've had a couple good days and it looks promising," Wayne Magwood, a Shem Creek shrimper said.
"We've got high hopes for this season," Mel Bell, the Director of Fisheries Management at DNR said. "Last couple years weren't that great."
Most shrimp in stores comes from overseas where fewer regulations lead to lower-priced shrimp, so only local shrimp would see a decrease in price.