December, 2011. Bon Secour, Alabama – Little Shrimpin’

Posted on December 9, 2011


Bon Secour Bay – French for “safe harbor”- sits along the eastern edge of Mobile Bay.  The settlement itself, located on the Bon Secour River, was founded during the late 19th century as a French fishing village.

Since that time it has been a safe harbor for commercial fishing fleets that primarily haul in Mobile Bay shrimp, “Royal Red” shrimp from the deeper Gulf waters, and a variety of salt water fish.

Bon Secour Bay is also a safe harbor for flocks of brown pelicans, blue herons, bottle nose dolphins, a wide variety of seabirds, and the occasional alligator.

As you approach the little village, gigantic live oak trees draped with Spanish moss, the salty smell of sea water, and well-used docks anchoring one or two shrimp boats in various states of maintenance all tell you Billy’s Seafood is just ahead.

Billy’s is just one of four small, family-owned fishing fleets-slash-processors that ship large quantities of seafood all over the United States.  Unlike Bayou La Batre you can buy retail here from two or more companies, but somehow Billy’s has become our favorite.

There’s always shrimp – little ones, big ones, bigger ones, one with heads on (that would be the Royal Reds), and ones with heads off.  Then there’s always a good variety of fish – grouper, flounder and more available whole, or as filets.  THEN there’s oysters, crab in season, gumbo, smoked mullet, and scallops from the Florida Gulf Coast.

It’s all fresh, it’s all good. 

Posted in: Travel - Alabama