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WEEKLY eNEWS: Grants, Programs, Events, Workshops/Webinars, Resources, Lagniappe

A Compilation of Environmental Education News from Across Louisiana.

GRANTS

Connecting Youth to the Outdoors Grant Program(Deadline: September 19)
The National Environmental Education Foundation in partnership with the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation, the Bureau of Land Management, and the US Forest Service, has announced a new initiative that seeks to catalyze efforts to increase the number of pre-K-12 youth, particularly urban and/or underserved youth, who build a connection with public lands as places for recreating, learning and volunteering. Proposed projects should maximize hands-on outdoor engagement opportunities on public lands, focused on the areas of education, recreation, and environmental stewardship. Multiple grants ranging from $2,500 to $20,000 are available to select applicants. Nonprofit organizations, academic institutions, and tribal groups are eligible to apply. Deadline: September 19, 2012. Please contact the National Environmental Education Foundation for more information and to apply for this funding: http://www.neefusa.org/grants/connecting_youth

Announcing 2012-2013 School Sustainability Grants Program (Deadline: October 1)

The Louisiana Environmental Education Commission (LEEC) is now accepting proposals for their 2012-2013 School Sustainability Grants program. These grants are designed to encourage student learning via sustainability initiatives in EPA Region 6 (Arkansas, Louisiana, New Mexico, Oklahoma, Texas) K-12 schools. Proposals to be considered are those within a specific school campus that will engage students and result in a more sustainable facility. Project funds are provided via a grant from the EPA Office of Environmental Education Sub-Grants Program to the LEEC, which is under the direction of the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries. School administrators or fulltime classroom teachers affiliated with accredited public or non-public schools (K-12) in EPA Region 6 (Arkansas, Louisiana, New Mexico, Oklahoma, Texas) are eligible to apply on behalf of their school.
GENERAL INFORMATION

  • Grant awards are not to exceed $5000.
  • The grant application deadline is October 1, 2012.
  • Applications will be accepted via electronic submission only.
  • All applications will undergo an anonymous and competitive grant review process.

APPLICATION PROCESS

  • Go to Application Guidelinesfor guidelines and additional information.
  • Register in the LEEC Registration System at Registration Form. You will then be assigned a username and password.
  • Once you have received your username and password, you will be able to access the proposal form.

Questions are to be directed to Venise Ortego, Environmental Education Coordinator, at vortego@wlf.la.gov.

The Gulf of Mexico Bay-Watershed Education and Training Program (Gulf B-WET)
NOAA recognizes that knowledge and commitment built from firsthand experience, especially in the context of one’s community and culture, is essential for achieving environmental stewardship. Experiences that are driven by rigorous academic learning standards, engender discovery and wonder, and nurture a sense of community will connect students with their watershed. These experiences will also reinforce an ethic of responsible citizenship and promote academic achievement. The cornerstone of B-WET is the Meaningful Watershed Educational Experience (MWEE). A MWEE is and educational experience that: is investigative or project oriented, is an integral part of the instructional program, is part of a sustained activity, considers the watershed as a system, and is enhanced by NOAA products, services, or personnel, where appropriate. The Gulf B-WET Program is one of seven B-WET regional programs across the country including California, Chesapeake Bay, Gulf of Mexico, Hawai'i, New England, Great Lakes and the Pacific Northwest. These seven programs make up the National NOAA B-WET Programwhich responds to regional education and environmental priorities through local implementation. The Gulf B-WET flierprovides a summary of the Gulf B-WET program.

 

PROGRAMS

2012-2013 4-H Youth Wetlands Program (YWP)
Registration for the 2012-2013 4-H Youth Wetlands Program (YWP) is now open! The YWP develops and distributes wetland education curriculum and teaching materials FREE to any teacher who signs up for the program. Also, students have opportunities to participate in wetland restoration projects and activities throughout the year. The goal of the program is to enhance student’s knowledge about the various types of wetlands found throughout the state and how they can help get involved with wetland conservation. Interested educators can go to our program website (www.lsuagcenter.com/yww) to register or contact their local 4-H extension agent. 
Audubon Zoo’s Wetland Express New Program Offerings
1.
WETLAND WARRIORS – A Wetland Conservation Program (Grade Levels: 6th– 8th; 10th-12th)
Our wetlands are disappearing at an alarming rate. Learn how vital our Louisiana Wetlands are to humans and animals alike. Gain an understanding of some of the primary sources of wetlands loss and what we can do to restore and conserve them. Meet animals that are affected by human impacts including habitat loss, over-hunting, pollution, and introduction of invasive species.
2. ENVIRONMENT’S GOT TALENT! (Grade Levels: 6th-7th; 9th-11th)
Learn how we can help save the wetlands by being more like the animals that live there! Discover unique adaptations animals have to utilize energy from natural resources: biomass, wind, solar, and water. Find out how we can use these same “alternative energies” to help reduce our footprint on the environment, including a discussion of the positive and negative impacts of each energy resource.
Click here to fill out our reservation form or contact Rose Butler Wall, Wetland Education Coordinator, at (504) 212.5183, rbutler@auduboninstitute.org. See attached PDF for more information.

Application Period Now Open for Coastal Forest Conservation Initiative (Deadline: September 28)
The application period is now open for landowners across coastal Louisiana interested in participating in the Coastal Forest Conservation Initiative (CFCI) program funded by the state’s Coastal Impact Assistance Program (CIAP). The CFCI is a voluntary program with a primary objective of acquiring land rights from willing landowners to address demonstrated threats of habitat loss or land-use change and opportunities for restoration or enhanced sustainability of coastal forest tracts that provide significant ecological value and may provide storm damage reduction functions. Land owners interested in participating are asked to submit an application providing information about the parcel of land they are proposing for inclusion in the program. Applications will be accepted through September 28, 2012. More detailed information about the program is available at www.coastal.la.gov/cfci. For more information about the CFCI, please contact Travis Woodard, 225-769-0546 or by email at travis.woodard@la.gov. For more information about Louisiana's coastal restoration and hurricane protection efforts, please contact Chuck Perrodin at (225) 342-7615 or by e-mail at chuck.perrodin2@la.gov.

Audubon Zoo’s Bugmobile New Program Offerings for 2012/2013!
Live Invertebrates!...Biofacts and Models…Meets Louisiana GLEs (Life Cycles, Habitats, Classification and more)…Classroom & Fair/Festival Programs…
Each Bugmobile visit will include live bugs, ranging from completely harmless to potentially deadly! Some bugs are native species living in our own backyards and houses; others are exotic species (not native to Louisiana or even the United States). Depending on the time of year, the visit may include seasonal species, like Monarch Butterfly caterpillars or Lubber Grasshoppers. Click here to fill out our reservation form or contact Dave Eidelman,Bugmobile Coordinator, (504) 212.5197, bugmobile@auduboninstitute.org, www.auduboninstitute.org. See attached PDF for more information.

Education opportunities at the New Orleans Botanical Garden
1.
Fairchild Challenge, started at the Fairchild Botanical Garden in Miami, FL. The Challenge, open to high schools in the New Orleans area, is a series of interdisciplinary contests focusing on the environment, to allow students to engage with nature according to their own interests. Student entries are judged, and schools earn points. The winning schools receive pots of money to continue their environmental endeavors: First place: $1,000, Second place: $500, Third place: $250. No charge to enter. Informational brunch and training session with Fairchild Botanical Garden staff will be held on Saturday, September 8 from 10:00-12:30 pm. To RSVP, please contact Emily Snyder at nobgeducation@nocp.orgor (504) 483-9470.
2. GLE-correlated field trips for 4-7 graders. Classes are hands-on, outdoor experiences that focus on the environmental and plant-based knowledge presented in each grade's standard curriculum. Students are encouraged to ask questions, make discoveries for themselves, and gain mastery of curricular requirements. For more information, or to sign your class up today, please contact Emily Snyder at nobgeducation@nocp.orgor (504) 483-9470.

 

EVENTS

Sally Ride Science Festival (September 22)
The Sally Ride Science Festival will be held at Louisiana State University in Baton Rouge on Saturday, September 22 from 11:00am to 4:15pm. Advanced Registration Fee: $20. Presented by ExxonMobil, the Sally Ride Science Festival includes:
• An inspiring talk by a featured speaker
• Discovery workshops for girls, which may be given by local veterinarians, astronomers, microbiologists and more
• Workshops for parents and teachers on ways to support girls' interests in science
• A street fair with booths, hands-on activities, food, and music
While our festivals are primarily focused on encouraging 5th-8th grade girls to pursue their interests in science, everyone is welcome to attend! Don’t miss out—advanced registration required! Sign up now at www.sallyridescience.com/festivalsor call (800) 561-5161

STEM Competition for High School Students(Deadline: October 1)
Siemens Foundation, in partnership with the College Board, is sponsoring the Siemens Competition in Math, Science & Technology, which recognizes remarkable talent early on, fostering individual growth for high school students who are willing to challenge themselves through science research. Through this competition, students have an opportunity to achieve national recognition for science research projects that they complete in high school. Students or teams of students can enter to win scholarships of up to $100,000 for their work. Registration is open. Visit the College Board websitefor more information. The deadline for project submission is Monday, October 1, 2012, at 5:00 pm EST.

 

WORKSHOPS/WEBINARS

Beyond The Bay: A Teacher Workshop about Birds and Barrier Islands (September 21-22)
Beyond the Bay is a new workshop designed to expose teachers to birds and coastal habitats of Louisiana through exploration of one of Louisiana’s barrier islands which provide important breeding grounds for many species of colonial nesting and shorebirds. The islands also play a pivotal role as a staging and refueling area for migratory birds. This is an exciting opportunity to see birds in their natural coastal habitats! Participants of this workshop will receive: hands-on training of lessons found in the BTNEP Louisiana Bird Curriculum, a birding trip to Trinity Island with an experienced bird watcher, content information, classroom resources, free meal, and up to 12 CLUs. No birding experience needed… only a willing mind! Participants will need to be in good physical condition. The birding trip to the island may require wading to and from the boat and ~1.5 mile walk. Registration Deadline: September 5, 2012. Workshop Fee: $20/person – non-refundable. Payment must be received prior to the workshop. Location: Louisiana Universities Marine Consortium (LUMCON), DeFelice Marine Center, Cocodrie Louisiana. Funded by the Barataria-Terrebonne National Estuary Program (BTNEP). See attached PDF for more information.

OneNOAA Science Seminars

Correction of Excessive Precipitation over Steep and High Mountains in a GCM

Add This OneNOAA Science Seminar to your Google Calendar

Date and Time:

September 04, 2012, 12:00 – 1:00 Eastern Time Zone [Check U.S. Time clockfor your local time]

Location:

NOAA Science Center (World Weather Building) Room TBD, 5200 Auth Road, Camp Springs, MD 20746

Speaker(s):

Winston Chao (NASA/GSFC/GMAO)

OneNOAA Seminar Sponsor:

NOAANCEP/EMC

Ocean Salinities Reveal Strong Global Water Cycle Intensification 1950-2000

Add This OneNOAA Science Seminar to your Google Calendar

Date and Time:

September 10, 2012, 10:00 – 11:00 Eastern Time Zone [Check U.S. Time clockfor your local time]

Location:

NOAA SSMC-34th Floor, Room 4817 (1315 East-West Highway, Silver Spring, MD 20910))

Speaker(s):

Paul Durack(Program for Climate Model Diagnosis and Intercomparison, Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory)

OneNOAA Seminar Sponsor:

NOAANational Oceanographic Data Center

CDIAC and Global Ocean CO2 Data Management

Add This OneNOAA Science Seminar to your Google Calendar

Date and Time:

September 11, 2012, 09:00 – 09:30 Eastern Time Zone [Check U.S. Time clockfor your local time]

Location:

NOAA SSMC-34th Floor, Room 4817 (1315 East-West Highway, Silver Spring, MD 20910)

Speaker(s):

Alex Kozyr(ORNL Carbon Dioxide Information Analysis Center)

OneNOAA Seminar Sponsor:

NOAANational Oceanographic Data Center

Predicting the Distribution of Mesophotic Corals Offshore of Maui, Hawaii

Add This OneNOAA Science Seminar to your Google Calendar

Date and Time:

Wednesday, September 12, 2012, 12:00 – 1:00 Eastern Time Zone [Check U.S. Time clockfor your local time]

Location:

NOAA, SSMC-4, Room 8150, 1305 East-West Hwy, Silver Spring, MD

Speaker(s):

Bryan Costa, Geospatial Scientist, CSS-Dynamac/NOAA NCCOS CCMA Matthew Kendall, Marine Biologist, NOAA NCCOS CCMA

OneNOAA Seminar Sponsor:

NOAANOS Science Seminar Series and NCCOS/CCMA/Biogeography Branch

Building Capacity to Measure, Analyze, and Evaluate Government Performance

Add This OneNOAA Science Seminar to your Google Calendar

Date and Time:

Wednesday, September 19, 2012 at 12:00pm Eastern Time Zone [Check U.S. Time clockfor your local time]

Location:

NOAA Central Library, 2nd Floor, SSMC-3 (1315 East-West Highway, Silver Spring, MD 20910)

Speaker(s):

Kathy Newcomer (George Washington University)

OneNOAA Seminar Sponsor:

NOAACoastal Services Center

Past Interglacial Sea Levels: Lessons For The Future

Add This OneNOAA Science Seminar to your Google Calendar

Date and Time:

September 20, 2012, 16:00 – 17:00 Eastern Time Zone [Check U.S. Time clockfor your local time]

Location:

Webinar Access Only

Speaker(s):

Daniel Muhs(Research Geologist, U.S. Geological Survey)

OneNOAA Seminar Sponsor:

NOAANOS Office of National Marine Sanctuaries West Coast Region

Good Trap, Bad Trap: Derelict Fish Traps around St. Thomas and St. John USVI

Add This OneNOAA Science Seminar to your Google Calendar

Date and Time:

September 25, 2012, 12:00 – 13:00 Eastern Time Zone [Check U.S. Time clockfor your local time]

Location:

NOAA, SSMC-4, Room 9153 (1305 East-West Hwy, Silver Spring, MD 20910)

Speaker(s):

Randy Clark(Marine Biologist, NOS/NCCOS/CCMA Biogeography Branch)

OneNOAA Seminar Sponsor:

NOAANOS Science Seminar Series and NCCOS/CCMA/Biogeography Branch

 

RESOURCES

Louisiana Conservationist Summer Issue Now Available
The summer issue of Louisiana’s oldest outdoor magazine,Louisiana Conservationist, is ready for your review. This issue is full of great stories, expanding on Louisiana’s coastal restoration, endangered species research, summer camps for children and an offshore excursion just for women. Our coastal restoration series goes further in depth as we explore the Mississippi River delta and its forever changing landscape. In addition, Dave Moreland, a regular LCM contributor, gives us a lesson in planting for all wildlife in his “Outdoor Roots” column. We also look at a new program called “Women in the Wild” where a group of 30 women was given the opportunity to try their hands at fishing at Grand Isle.  Lastly, we travel to the northern part of the state to look for the elusive Louisiana pine snake, the rarest snake in North America. These stories and more await you in the summer edition ofthe Louisiana Conservationist at www.louisianaconservationist.org.  

New Urban Waters Outreach Toolkit
EPA, through the Anacostia Watershed Outreach and Education Project, has released a comprehensive toolkit that EPA regional offices, watershed organizations and others who promote green business can use to encourage homeowners to install rain barrels to prevent contamination in their local rivers. The toolkit includes details on the development of social marketing outreach to local residents, lessons learned and a summary of project accomplishments. Appendices include communication scripts for weathercasters, a detailed list of project partners, partnerships, and photos and screenshots of the messages used. For more information contact Catherine King at king.catherine@epa.govor Bryan Goodwin at goodwin.bryan@epa.gov.  Click here for more information.

US EPA Community-Based Water Resiliency (CBWR) - Water Resiliency Action Plan (WRAP) Kit – Beta Testing
The US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) would like your feedback on the newly released, beta-version of the new Water Resiliency Action Plan (WRAP) Kit. The WRAP Kit will be included in version 2.0 of the Community-Based Water Resiliency (CBWR) Tool. The WRAP Kit provides a step-by-step process for planning a water emergency roundtable. It includes everything from sample agendas and invitations, to suggested planning committee members and participants, logistical templates and scripts for recruiting participants. The purpose of beta testing the WRAP Kit is to ensure that the software is user-friendly; the information and recommended resources are applicable; and, that the software is free of problems. Identified changes will be reviewed for incorporation before the WRAP Kit is finalized and distributed. To access the WRAP Kit, please click on the following link: https://alscorp9.securesites.net/cbwrt/wrap.html. Attached is a detailed beta-testing feedback spreadsheet to capture any comments you may have to assist with your review of the WRAP Kit. Once you have completed your review of the tool, please e-mail the response spreadsheet to the CBWR Project Lead, Nushat Thomas (thomas.nushat@epa.gov) by close of businessFriday, September 21, 2012. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact Nushat Thomas via e-mail or phone at 202-564-4674.

Children's Environmental Health Listserv
The August, 2012 edition of EPA’s Children’s Environmental Health Listserv is now available. The Listserv is meant to enhance collaborations by sharing children’s environmental health information and upcoming events and activities.  It is free, and we keep your email address private. To subscribe, send an e-mail to coopwood.theodore@epa.gov. You can unsubscribe at anytime by sending an e-mail to: unsubscribe-ceh-list@lists.epa.gov 

 

LAGNIAPPE

Look, Don't Touch: The Problem with Environmental Education: http://www.orionmagazine.org/index.php/articles/article/6929

 

Find out about wetland outreach activities including symposiums, conferences, meetings, educational opportunities, volunteer opportunities, and related support material at the Louisiana Unified Coastal Community Calendar at http://lacoast.gov/calendar/


Venise Ortego, Environmental Education Coordinator, 337-948-0255, vortego@wlf.la.gov
Juliet Raffray, Environmental Education Assistant Coordinator, 225-765-0124, jraffray@wlf.la.gov
Louisiana Environmental Education Commission (LEEC) – www.wlf.louisiana.gov/eec


 

L.D.W.F. Providing Public Dove Hunting Opportunities on Private Land Leases and WMAs Sept. 1

Release Date: 08/28/2012

 

Aug. 28, 2012 -- The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) will provide public dove hunting opportunities for the Sept. 1 season opening on leased private land and state wildlife management areas around the state. All hunting sites listed below are subject to closure however, due to Tropical Storm Isaac impacts on habitat which will have to be determined once the storm has moved through the state.

The 2012-13 dove season opens Saturday, Sept. 1 in the north and south zones and hunters have multiple options available. LDWF has leased private land in the following parishes for Sept. 1 only, from noon to sunset:

*Beauregard Parish, DeRidder -- 500 acres harvested corn and milo. Directions: Take Hwy190 West from DeRidder. The field is approximately 5 miles West of DeRidder on the North side of Hwy 190 just past Hwy 3226. Check in will be at the rice dryers. Contact Kori Legleu at 337-491-2575 for more information. Maps will be available at the Lake Charles Office.

*Franklin Parish -- 110 acres harvested milo. East of Gilbert at the intersection of Hwy 4 and Hwy 572. No ATV’s.

*Grant Parish -- 180 acres harvested milo. Directions: 5 miles north of Boyce on La. Hwy 8. No ATV’s.

*Jefferson Davis Parish, Welsh -- 290 acre harvested rice field. Directions: Take I-10 to Exit 59 (Roanoke). Head North on Hwy 395, then turn West (left) on Blanchard Rd. Follow Blanchard Rd to Compton Rd. Field located on Southwest corner of Blanchard and Compton roads. Contact Kori Legleu at 337-491-2575 for more information. Maps will be available at the Lake Charles Office.

*Rapides Parish – 90 acres harvested milo. Directions: 2 miles east of Lecompte on Hwy 457. No ATV’s.

The leased fields will be open to public dove hunting on Sept. 1 only and LDWF personnel will be present at the field to issue permits and monitor the hunt.  Hunters 16 years of age and older are charged $10 to hunt, while hunters 15 years of age and younger hunt for free. All hunters are required to obtain a permit on site. Permits will be issued at each site on a first come, first serve basis until each field is filled. 

Hunters 16 years of age and older must also have an appropriate hunting license with HIP certification. HIP certification is available from hunting license vendors at no charge. 

Additionally, LDWF provides public dove hunting opportunities on state wildlife management areas including: Bayou Pierre WMA, northwest Red River Parish; Big Colewa WMA, West Carroll Parish; Boeuf WMA, Caldwell Parish; Clear Creek WMA, Vernon Parish; Elbow Slough WMA, southeastern Rapides Parish; Floy McElroy WMA, Richland Parish; Fort Polk WMA, Vernon Parish; Loggy Bayou WMA, Bossier Parish; Red River WMA, Concordia Parish; and West Bay WMA, Allen Parish.

For more information about public dove hunting opportunities, go to http://www.wlf.louisiana.gov/hunting/dove or contact Jeff Duguay at 225-765-2353 or jduguay@wlf.la.gov .

 

LDWF Closes Wildlife Management Areas in Advance of TS Isaac Landfall

Release Date: 08/27/2012

Aug. 27, 2012 - The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries has closed 26 state wildlife management areas (WMAs) within the parishes of the anticipated landfall path of Tropical Storm Isaac.

Those WMAs include the Acadiana Conservation Corridor, Atchafalaya Delta, Attakapas, Biloxi, Elm Hall, Grassy Lake, Hutchinson Creek, Joyce, Lake Boeuf, Lake Ramsey, Manchac, Marsh Island, Maurepas Swamp, Pass a Loutre, Pearl River, Pointe au Chenes, Pomme de Terre, Salvador-Timken, Sandy Hollow, Sherburne, Spring Bayou, State WMA, Tangipahoa, Thistlethwaite, Tunica Hills and White Lake Wetlands Conservation Area. 

All WMAs designated as closed will remain closed until further notice. For a complete list of WMAs and locations, go to www.wlf.louisiana.gov/wma .

The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries is charged with managing and protecting Louisiana's abundant natural resources. For more information, visit us at www.wlf.louisiana.gov on Facebook at www.facebook.com/ldwffb or follow us on Twitter @LDWF.

For more information contact Randy Myers at 225-765-2350 or rmyers@wlf.la.gov.

LDWF Closes Elmer's Island Due to TS Isaac

Release Date: 08/26/2012

Aug. 26, 2012 - The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries announces the temporary closing of Elmer's Island, located on the southwestern tip of Jefferson Parish. The National Weather Service in New Orleans has issued a hurricane watch for coastal areas of Louisiana. As a precautionary and preparedness  measure Elmer's Island will remain closed until further notice.

The Department of Wildlife and Fisheries is charged with managing and protecting Louisiana's abundant natural resources. For more information, visit us at www.wlf.louisiana.gov on Facebook at www.facebook.com/ldwffb or follow us on Twitter @LDWF.

For more information contact Ashley Wethey at awethey@wlf.la.gov or 225-721-0489.

Three Men Charged with Hunting Violations

Release Date: 08/24/2012

Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries Enforcement Division agents cited three men for alleged hunting violations on Aug. 16 in Red River Parish.

Agents cited Tyler Goodwin, 21, of Ringgold, David Beard, 20, of Coushatta, and Jordan Northcutt, 22, of Hall Summit for hunting from a public road, hunting from a moving vehicle, discharging a firearm from a public road and hunting wild game quadrupeds during illegal hours.

Agents received an Operation Game Thief complaint concerning these three men.  The landowner witnessed them shining a spotlight on his property.  LDWF agents responded and caught up with their vehicle as they turned into a residence.

Agents found the men in possession of a .223 and .22 rifle and a freshly harvested rabbit.

The penalty for each offense brings a fine between $250 and $500 and up to 90 days in jail.

If someone witnesses or has information concerning a violation, they should call Operation Game Thief's toll-free 24-hour phone line or use the department's tip411 program.  The toll free number is 1-800-442-2511.

To use the tip411 program, tipsters can text LADWF and their tip to 847411 or download the "LADWF Tips" iPhone app from the Apple iTunes store free of charge.  CitizenObserver, the tip411 provider, uses technology that removes all identifying information before LDWF receives the text so that LDWF cannot identify the sender.  Texting or downloading the app enables the public to send anonymous tips to LDWF and lets LDWF respond back, creating a two-way anonymous “chat”.  Users of the app or texters can also send in photos to help support their claim and be used as evidence.

The information is received by a Wildlife and Fisheries operator and immediately relayed to a wildlife agent who will investigate. If the information results in an arrest, the caller is eligible for a cash reward.

Since the program began, more than $280,000 in rewards has been paid. Information provided by OGT informants has resulted in the apprehension of more than 700 violators who were convicted on a multitude of state and federal charges.

Agents participating in the case were Sgt. Charles Dison and Senior Agent John Blalock.

For more information, contact Adam Einck at 225-765-2465 or aeinck@wlf.la.gov.

Poachers Busted by Tip from Operation Game Thief

Release Date: 08/23/2012

Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) Enforcement Division agents cited five men on alleged poaching violations in St. Charles Parish on Aug. 18.

Agents received a complaint from their Operation Game Thief (OGT) program of individuals cleaning freshly harvested migratory game birds and rabbits in their back yard.  The agents responded quickly to the residence where they made contact with the alleged suspects still cleaning the game.

Agents cited Rico Hernandez, 45, of Bridge City, Yoan Hernandez-Casanova, 27, of Bridge City, Juan Munoz, 25, of Metairie, Miguel Farradas, 33, of Davie, Fla., and Yandry Almeida, 27, of Cutler Bay, Fla., for violating state migratory game bird regulations and possessing rabbits during a closed season.

The agents seized six whistling ducks and eight rabbits taken out of season. Agents also seized three guns which were in the possession of the suspects and believed to be used to illegally take the game.

State violations of migratory game bird regulations brings a fine between $400 and $950 and up to 120 days in jail.  Possession of rabbits during a closed season carries a fine between $250 and $500 and up to 90 days in jail.  If convicted, the men also face civil restitution in the amount of $413.34.

If someone witnesses or has information concerning a violation, they should call Operation Game Thief's toll-free 24-hour phone line or use the department's tip411 program.  The toll free number is 1-800-442-2511.

To use the tip411 program, tipsters can text LADWF and their tip to 847411 or download the "LADWF Tips" iPhone app from the Apple iTunes store free of charge.  CitizenObserver, the tip411 provider, uses technology that removes all identifying information before LDWF receives the text so that LDWF cannot identify the sender.  Texting or downloading the app enables the public to send anonymous tips to LDWF and lets LDWF respond back, creating a two-way anonymous “chat”.  Users of the app or texters can also send in photos to help support their claim and be used as evidence.

The information is received by a Wildlife and Fisheries operator and immediately relayed to a wildlife agent who will investigate. If the information results in an arrest, the caller is eligible for a cash reward. 

Since the program began, more than $280,000 in rewards has been paid. Information provided by OGT informants has resulted in the apprehension of more than 700 violators who were convicted on a multitude of state and federal charges.

Agents participating in the case were Senior Agent Austin Arteaga, Sgt. Kris Bourgeois, and St. Charles Parish Sheriff’s Office Deputy James Grimaldi.

For more information, contact Adam Einck at 225-765-2465 or aeinck@wlf.la.gov.

Alligator Violations on the Rise in Louisiana

Release Date: 08/22/2012

The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) Enforcement Division has seen a steady rise in alligator violations since 2009.

According to LDWF violation statistics, Enforcement Division agents have issued 98 alligator related violations in 2012 already.  LDWF issued 60 total alligator related citations in 2007 and 2008, 69 in 2009 and 2010, and 80 in 2011.

“The increase of alligator citations is of concern and the department is doing their best to catch these violators,” said Col. Winton Vidrine, head of the LDWF Enforcement Division.

The popularity in outdoor reality TV shows seems to be one of the reasons why there have been more alligator violations in the last couple of years.

“In some of our cases the subjects have admitted to watching a reality TV show and then wanting to replicate what they watched,” said Col. Vidrine.  “While these shows offer a high level of entertainment, they do not offer a lot of information on how to legally harvest an alligator.”

The majority of the alligator violations are classified as possession of an alligator during a closed season, failing to possess a license and possession of an alligator without a license.  Also, most of the increases in violations are occurring in the Saint Mary, Saint Martin, Assumption, Saint James, Saint John, LaFourche and Terrebonne parishes going from two violations in 2010 to 42 violations so far in 2012.   For illegally possessing an alligator, poachers can get up to a $950 fine and 120 days in jail for the first offense.

LDWF issues alligator harvest tags for property containing sufficient alligator habitat capable of sustaining an alligator harvest.  A resident alligator hunter must either own this approved land or have permission to hunt alligators on land that is classified as wetland habitat in order to qualify for alligator harvest tags.  Alligator hunters apply for alligator tags prior to the season.  To apply for tags, hunters must submit an application prior to the season found at www.wlf.louisiana.gov/wildlife/alligator-hunting.

The alligator season is split into an east zone that runs from the last Wednesday of August for 30 days and the west zone that goes from the first Wednesday of September for 30 days.  A resident alligator hunting license costs $25.

“With the upcoming opening of alligator season, hunters are reminded to utilize their tags only on the approved property and that all alligators caught on their lines must be harvested and immediately tagged,” said Noel Kinler, LDWF’s alligator program manager.

Currently there are an estimated 1.5 million alligators in Louisiana.  Since 1972, over 870,000 wild alligators have been harvested.

“The department’s Alligator Program has been very successful in managing the alligator resource from near extinction to a healthy sustainable population,” said Col. Vidrine.  “These regulations are put in place for a reason and have worked for over 40 years since their inception in 1972.”

Residents not possessing or having permission to harvest alligators on private lands or public lands/lakes can harvest alligators as an alligator sport hunter while accompanied by a guide.  Non-residents can only harvest alligators as an alligator sport hunter while accompanied by a guide.  A guide must be an alligator hunter possessing tags.  An alligator sport hunter license cost is $25 for Louisiana residents and $150 for non-residents.

Residents not possessing or having permission to harvest alligators on private lands may be able to harvest alligators on public lands or lakes.  These public lands/lakes are managed by many different entities ranging from local parish governments to federal governmental agencies.  Methods in which alligator hunters are chosen for these areas include bidding and lotteries.

The lottery alligator harvest program provides the opportunity for over 300 resident alligator hunters to harvest approximately 800 alligators on almost 40 Wildlife Management Areas (WMA)/public lakes located throughout the state.

Lottery alligator harvest applications become available mid to late May of each year and lists all available WMAs/public lakes.  For more information on LDWF’s Alligator Program, visit http://www.wlf.louisiana.gov/wildlife/alligator-program.

Anyone wanting to report alligator violations should anonymously call LDWF’s 24-hour toll free Operation Game Thief hotline at 1-800-442-2511 or utilize LDWF's new tip411 program.  To use the tip411 program, citizens can anonymously text LADWF and their tip to 847411 or download the "LADWF Tips" iPhone app from the Apple iTunes store free of charge.  CitizenObserver, the tip411 provider, uses technology that removes all identifying information before LDWF receives the text so that LDWF cannot identify the sender.

For more information, contact Adam Einck at 225-765-2465 or aeinck@wlf.la.gov.

Chicot Lake Drawdown Scheduled

Release Date: 08/21/2012

Aug. 21, 2012 – The water control structure on Chicot Lake near Ville Platte, La., will be opened soon after Labor Day to allow for a lake drawdown.  The action is part of an integrated management plan developed to control submerged vegetation. 

In addition to the drawdown, the Department will continue herbicide applications, and triploid (sterile) grass carp will be introduced this winter.

Drawdowns on Chicot Lake will be conducted annually to mimic natural water fluctuation.  The target level for this year’s drawdown is two feet below pool stage.  Future drawdowns will be three foot below pool stage.

The lake will not be closed to fishing during the drawdown, but caution is advised of boaters during the low water period as boat lanes will not provide normal clearance for underwater obstructions. 

For further information regarding the drawdown, contact Jody David, LDWF Biologist Manager, at (337) 948-0255 or at jdavid@wlf.la.gov.

The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries is charged with managing and protecting Louisiana's abundant natural resources. For more information, visit us at www.wlf.louisiana.gov on Facebook at www.facebook.com/ldwffb or follow us on Twitter @LDWF.

For press inquiries, contact Ashley Wethey at awethey@wlf.la.gov(225) 765-2396.

SPECIAL eNEWS Announcing 2012-2013 School Sustainability Grants Program!

Announcing 2012-2013 School Sustainability Grants Program 

As teachers and administrators, have you ever looked around your school and thought, “Wow! Opportunity missed!” when considering what students could be learning about sustainability from your school’s facility? Here is your chance to engage students in making their school a more sustainable one!

The Louisiana Environmental Education Commission (LEEC) is now accepting proposals for their 2012-2013 School Sustainability Grants program. These grants are designedto encourage student learning via sustainability initiatives in EPA Region 6 (Arkansas, Louisiana, New Mexico, Oklahoma, Texas) K-12 schools. Proposals to be considered are those within a specific school campus that will engage students and result in a more sustainable facility. Project funds are provided via a grant from the EPA Office of Environmental Education Sub-Grants Program to the LEEC, which is under the direction of the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries.

ELIGIBILITY

School administrators or fulltime classroom teachersaffiliated with accredited public or non-public schools (K-12) in EPA Region 6 (Arkansas, Louisiana, New Mexico, Oklahoma, Texas) are eligible to apply on behalf of their school.

GENERAL INFORMATION

  • Grant awards are not to exceed $5000.
  • The grant application deadline is October 1, 2012.
  • Applications will be accepted via electronic submission only.
  • All applications will undergo an anonymous and competitive grant review process.

APPLICATION PROCESS

  • Go to Application Guidelines for guidelines and additional information.
  • Register in the LEEC Registration System at Registration Form. You will then be assigned a username and password.
  • Once you have received your username and password, you will be able to access the proposal form.

QUESTIONS

Questions are to be directed to Venise Ortego, Environmental Education Coordinator, at vortego@wlf.la.gov.  
 

Body of Noble Man Recovered from Toledo Bend

Release Date: 08/17/2012

Search and Rescue officials recovered the body of a Noble man from Toledo Bend Sabine Parish on Aug. 16.

Search crews from the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries, Natchitoches Parish Sheriff’s Office and the Sabine Parish Sheriff’s Office recovered the body of Brandon Jeane, 27, around 9:45 p.m.

Officials were notified about a fisherman who fell overboard in Toledo Bend around 6:45 p.m. on Aug. 16.  Jeane was fishing with his Uncle in a 16 foot boat when he fell overboard without a personal flotation device.  According to the Uncle, Jeane never resurfaced and he called for help.

Jeane’s body was turned over to the Sabine Parish Coroner’s Office to determine a cause of death.  LDWF will be the lead investigative agency for this boating crash incident.

For more information, contact Adam Einck at 225-765-2465 or aeinck@wlf.la.gov.

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