Louisiana governor urges return to fishing

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Saltwater recreational fishing reopened in the vast majority of Louisiana's state waters three weeks ago and it's time for anglers to return to the water with families and friends, according to Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal.

The governor recently joined several representatives of the recreational fishing community on a fishing trip in the Gulf of Mexico south of Houma, La., catching a variety of popular sportfish.

"One of the greatest traditions in the Sportsman's Paradise is recreational fishing. That tradition was put on hold the first half of our summer because of closures arising out of the Deepwater Horizon incident, but now most of our state waters are reopened to recreational fishing. From what I saw firsthand and what we caught, fishing is back," Jindal said in a statement.

Capt. Tommy Pellegrin, of Houma, hosted the trip aboard his charterboat, Reel Life, a 39-foot custom boat built by Jeanerette, La., boatbuilder Gravois Boats. After a 50-mile trip into the Gulf of Mexico beyond the closed area, Pellegrin put his clients onto hungry fish swarming around oil rigs. With a request from his son to bring home fish for dinner, the governor returned to Baton Rouge with an ice chest of mangrove snapper filets that the Jindals later grilled.

Although he stressed that ensuring public safety is paramount, Jindal said he has urged the federal government to expedite testing so that federal closed areas can be reopened as soon as possible.

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