LDWF News

LDWF News Release

LDWF Seeks Volunteers For Derelict Crab Trap Clean-Up

Release Date: 02/07/2012

(Feb. 7, 2012) – Once again, the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries, in partnership with Louisiana Sea Grant, with assistance from the Coastal Conservation Association of Louisiana, the Louisiana Crab Task Force, the Barataria-Terrebonne Estuary Program, the Louisiana Wildlife Federation and the Nature Conservancy, will host the 2012 Derelict Crab Trap Clean-up in portions of St. Bernard, Plaquemines and Terrebonne parishes over the next two months.

Since the program began in 2004, the state has removed and disposed of more than 19,000 derelict and abandoned crab traps.  The removal of these traps is not only vital in conserving the blue crab resource, but also improves safety and navigability of waterways.

The schedule for clean-ups is as follows:

St. Bernard and Plaquemines parishes clean-ups will begin Feb. 25 at 6 a.m. and end March 5 at 6 a.m.  Volunteer clean-up days, hosted by LDWF and Louisiana Sea Grant, will be held on Saturday, Feb. 25 and Saturday, March 3 at Sweetwater Marina on Delacroix Island.

The Terrebonne Parish clean-up will begin March 17 at 6 a.m. and end March 26 at 6 a.m.  A volunteer clean-up day will be hosted by LDWF on Saturday, March 17 at Louisiana Universities Marine Consortium in Cocodrie. 

Derelict traps may be collected anytime during the cleanup period. Representative with LDWF and Louisiana Sea Grant will be available at each disposal site on the volunteer days beginning at 8:30 a.m. to distribute instructions, maps and supplies to volunteers, assist with the unloading of derelict traps and document the number of traps removed.

In order to conduct the trap clean-ups, crabfishermen must remove their crab traps from within the closure area during the closure period, and all remaining crab traps will be considered abandoned and may be removed by agency personnel or volunteers. 

Restrictions to clean-up activities are as follows:

  • Crab traps may be removed only between one-half hour before sunrise to one-half hour after sunset.
  • Individuals removing crab traps may not possess these traps outside of the closure area; and, abandoned traps must be brought to designated    disposal sites.
  • Regulations do not provide authorization for public access to private property, as access can only be provided by individual landowners.

Volunteers

LDWF continues to seek volunteers to assist with the crab trap removal. Volunteers willing to participate in the trap clean-ups are encouraged to pre-register with Louisiana Sea Grant. Registration information, along with other clean-up information is available at: http://www.laseagrant.org/crabtraps/.

Volunteers collecting crab traps are asked to place the traps and buoys at the predetermined disposal sites.

Additional information may also be obtained from the Derelict Crab Trap Removal Program web site www.derelictcrabtrap.net.

To view a map of the closures areas click here:

For St. Bernard/Plaquemines Parish description area and map, click here: 

For Terrebonne Parish description area and map, click here:

Since its establishment in 1968, Louisiana Sea Grant has worked to promote stewardship of the state’s coastal resources through a combination of research, education and outreach programs critical to the cultural, economic and environmental health of Louisiana’s coastal zone. Louisiana Sea Grant, based at Louisiana State University, is part of the National Sea Grant Program, a network of 30 programs in each of the U.S. coastal and Great Lakes states and Puerto Rico/U.S. Virgin Islands.

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 please contact Martin Bourgeois at mbourgeois@wlf.la.gov or (225) 765-2401 or Dr. Julie Anderson at janderson@agcenter.lsu.edu or (225) 578-0771.

 

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Crab Task Force Meeting

Release Date: 02/06/2012

 

Feb. 6, 2011 - The Louisiana Crab Task Force will meet on Thursday, February 09, 2012 at 1:30 p.m. in the Louisiana Room of the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) building in Baton Rouge. 

Agenda items will include: Update on Louisiana Wild-Caught Seafood Certification Program; Soft-Shell Crab Shedder Reporting; Trade Adjustment Assistance Program for Crab Fishermen; H-2B Visas and Immigrant Labor issues; Derelict Crab Trap Removal Rodeos; MSC Certification and Chain of Custody Certifications; Louisiana Seafood Promotion and Marketing Board efforts; and Election of Crab Task Force officers.

The Crab Task Force is an industry advisory group comprised of fishermen, soft crab shedders, and crab dealers and processors, as well as state and university representatives.  The task force, established by Act No. 57 of the 2001 regular legislative session, advises LDWF and the Wildlife and Fisheries Commission on matters pertaining to the management and development of the Louisiana crab industry. 

 For more information, contact Carl Britt at 985-882-0027, or cbritt@wlf.la.gov

 

CORRECTION: UPDATED LINK Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries Commission Considers Commercial Net Season on False River

Release Date: 02/02/2012

(Feb. 2, 2012) -The Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries Commission during their February 2 monthly meeting took action to establish a recurring commercial net season on False River in Pointe Coupee Parish.  The proposed action would remove the current net ban and allow the use of specified nets to allow commercial fishermen the opportunity to utilize the resource.  A commercial season will allow for removal of undesirable rough fish.

In 1991, False River gained trophy status and initiated a largemouth bass management plan.  This plan included a slot limit and banned the use of gill nets, trammel nets and seines.  The trophy status was rescinded in 1998 and largemouth bass regulations were altered to manage for a lake of special concern.  Since the lake is no longer managed under trophy status, the need for a net ban no longer exists. 

The proposed season will run from November 1 through the last day of February and is structured in a way to minimize conflict with boaters and recreational anglers. 

This recommendation is also supported by the Pointe Coupee Parish Police Jury.

To view the full notice of intent, click here

Public comment on the Notice of Intent will be accepted no later than April 5, 2012.  Comments should be submitted to Mike Wood, Director, Inland Fisheries, P.O. Box 98000, Baton Rouge, LA 70898-9000 or mwood@wlf.la.gov.

 LDWF is charged with managing and protecting Louisiana’s abundant natural resources. For more information, visit us at www.wlf.louisiana.gov, and on Facebook at www.facebook.comldwffbor follow us on Twitter @LDWF.

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

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L.W.F.C. Adopts Notices of Intent For 2012-14 Hunting Seasons, Hunting Regulations and W.M.A. Rules

Release Date: 02/02/2012

Feb. 2, 2012- The Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries Commission (LWFC) adopted notices of intent for the 2013-14 hunting season and the 2012-13 Wildlife Management Areas (WMA) General Rules and Regulations at their Feb. 2 meeting.

The notices of intent include proposed hunting season dates and changes from the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) for the upcoming fall hunting season and provide for a public comment period.

Some of the proposed changes include:

*Continuing restricted deer harvest for 2012-13 within Area 6, specifically on land within the Morganza Floodway from I-10 south.

*Modifying the deer season bag limit, beginning with the 2013/14 deer season, to allow for a hunter’s choice option: season limit will still be 6 deer per year, but hunter would have option to harvest as many as 4 antlerless deer.

*Amending the Primitive Firearm language by removing the pre-1900 designation to allow for additional types of firearms.  Additionally, specify that only Commission approved calibers will be allowed.

*Allow the use of air rifles for the take of squirrels, rabbits and outlaw quadrupeds.

*Allowing youths 17 or younger to use any legal weapon during the primitive firearm season on WMAs.  This would align WMAs with the change made during the 2011-12 hunting season on private lands.

*Providing additional opportunity to take feral hogs on Atchafalaya Delta, Pointe-aux-Chenes, Salvador and Pass-a-Loutre WMAs.  Additional opportunities to recreationally take nutria will be provided from Sept. 1 to March 31. 

*Maintaining the deer season on Attakapas WMA established by Declaration of Emergency for the 2011-12 hunting season.

*Plus modifications to hunting season dates per species and regulations on select WMAs to provide additional opportunities. 

*A nine-day “with or without dogs” deer season on Kisatchie National Forest, December 15 to 23, 2012, bucks only.

To view the full notice of intent and all proposed hunting season dates and regulations changes for the upcoming hunting season, please visit http://www.wlf.louisiana.gov/action-items.

Public comment will be accepted at LWFC monthly meetings from March through May and/or can be submitted in writing by mail to: Randy Myers, Wildlife Division, LDWF, PO Box 98000, Baton Rouge, LA 70898-9000, until May 3, or by email to rmyers@wlf.la.govthrough that same date.

The public meeting schedule for the proposed hunting season dates, general hunting regulations and WMA regulations is as follows:

March 13 at 6 p.m., Alexandria Convention Hall located at 915 Third St.

March 13 at 6:30 p.m., LDWF Office in Minden located at 9961 Hwy. 80.

March 14 at 6:30 p.m., Yambilee Festival Bldg., 1939 W. Landry, Opelousas 

March 15 at 6 p.m., Bastrop Visitor Center, 124 N. Washington St.

March 15 at 6:30 p.m., LSU Ag Center, 7101 Gulf Hwy., Lake Charles.

March 21 at 6 p.m., St. John Parish Council Chambers, 1801 W. Airline Hwy., Laplace

For more information, contact Randy Myers at 225-765-2359 or rmyers@wlf.la.gov.

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Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries Commission Considers Commercial Net Season on False River

Release Date: 02/02/2012

(Feb. 2, 2012) -The Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries Commission during their February 2 monthly meeting took action to establish a recurring commercial net season on False River in Pointe Coupee Parish.  The proposed action would remove the current net ban and allow the use of specified nets to allow commercial fishermen the opportunity to utilize the resource.  A commercial season will allow for removal of undesirable rough fish.

In 1991, False River gained trophy status and initiated a largemouth bass management plan.  This plan included a slot limit and banned the use of gill nets, trammel nets and seines.  The trophy status was rescinded in 1998 and largemouth bass regulations were altered to manage for a lake of special concern.  Since the lake is no longer managed under trophy status, the need for a net ban no longer exists. 

The proposed season will run from November 1 through the last day of February and is structured in a way to minimize conflict with boaters and recreational anglers. 

This recommendation is also supported by the Pointe Coupee Parish Police Jury.

To view the full notice of intent, please click here.

Public comment on the Notice of Intent will be accepted no later than April 5, 2012.  Comments should be submitted to Mike Wood, Director, Inland Fisheries, P.O. Box 98000, Baton Rouge, LA 70898-9000 or mwood@wlf.la.gov.

 LDWF is charged with managing and protecting Louisiana’s abundant natural resources. For more information, visit us at www.wlf.louisiana.gov, and on Facebook at www.facebook.comldwffbor follow us on Twitter @LDWF.

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

 

 

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Bassmaster Classic Returns to Sportsman’s Paradise, Again

Release Date: 02/01/2012

LDWF stocking efforts combined with prime habitat make the Red River an ideal venue for the 2012 Classic

 (Feb. 1, 2012)- The world’s premier fishing event will return to Sportsman’s Paradise this February, as Louisiana is poised to host its third Bassmaster Classic in four years.  This tournament is the BASS organization’s 42nd annual event, where the best of the best will compete for the heaviest stringer.  The Classic will be held on Feb. 24-26, 2012, on the Red River in Shreveport-Bossier City. 

The 2009 Classic, also held out of Shreveport-Bossier on the Red River, set new Classic records for the heaviest total weight and the heaviest average catch per day.  It also set a new record for attendance at the outdoor expo and weigh-in events, with an attendance of over 137,000 spectators.

The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries and the Red River Waterway Commission have heavily stocked the Red River with Florida largemouth bass to enhance the bass fishery with genetics that increase potential for record-breaking bass size.  Over the last ten years, the two agencies have worked together to stock over one million quality, Florida largemouth bass fingerlings into all five pools of the Red River.

During the 2011 Classic, held in New Orleans, LDWF biologists collected tissue samples from the seven largest fish caught.  Six of the seven bass tested positive for Florida genetics, a likely result of the Department’s stocking efforts in the New Orleans area.

LDWF’s extensive efforts to manage habitat, create and enforce regulations and enhance sport fisheries through stocking, position Louisiana as a prime location for the Classic as well as other large-scale fishing tournaments, benefitting both the people and economy of Louisiana. 

“Our Florida largemouth bass stocking efforts, in combination with the prime habitat offered by the Red River presents great potential for yet another recording breaking Classic in Louisiana,” said LDWF Secretary Robert Barham. 

 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/ldwffbor follow us on Twitter @LDWF.

For press inquiries, contact Ashley Wethey at awethey@wlf.la.gov(225) 765-239

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Louisiana Youth Can Register Now For 2011 Hunter of the Year Awards

Release Date: 01/31/2012

Jan. 31, 2012-- The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) and the Louisiana Outdoor Writers Association (LOWA) are encouraging hunters 15 years of age or younger to enter the 2011 Youth Hunter of the Year competition. 

The contest requires youth hunters to submit a story about their hunting experience along with photographs of the hunt.  LDWF and LOWA will then select a male and female youth hunter of the year based upon the stories and photos that are received. 

Visit the LDWF website at http://www.wlf.state.la.us/hunting/youth-hunter-registry-programfor information on the Youth Hunter Registry Program and the2011 Youth Hunter of the Year Contest.

Youth hunters who participated in any hunting activity during the 2011-12 hunting season are encouraged to participate.  This is not a big buck or turkey contest. The program is about youths enjoying a hunting experience, with or without success, and keeping the hunting tradition alive in Louisiana. The deadline to enter the 2011 Youth Hunter of the Year Contest is June 30, 2012.

The two winners will be recognized at the Louisiana Outdoor Writers Conference this summer.  Winners will receive a plaque in recognition of their achievement and a gift certificate from Bowie Outfitters in Baton Rouge.

Additionally, all participants who register their 2011-12 hunting experiences with the Youth Hunter Registry Program will be eligible to win a gift certificate from Bowie Outfitters (winner to be selected by a random drawing).

For more information, contact Scott Durham at 225-765-2351 or sdurham@wlf.la.govor David Moreland at 225-978-6552 or helfinroots@hotmail.com.

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.govon Facebook at www.facebook.com/ldwffbor follow us on Twitter @LDWF.

 

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LDWF Agents Make Arrest on Elmer’s Island Wildlife Refuge

Release Date: 01/31/2012

Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) Enforcement Division agents arrested a Texas man for allegedly driving while intoxicated (DWI) and numerous wildlife management area violations on the Elmer’s Island Wildlife Refuge in Jefferson Parish on Jan. 24.

Agents arrested Matthew M. John, 21, of Bullard, Texas, who is temporarily living in Rayne, for second offense DWI, failing to take a breathalyzer test twice within five years, possessing an illegal firearm, possessing a firearm and glass bottles on Elmer’s Island and simple littering.  John was booked into the Jefferson Parish Correctional Center.

While on patrol, Agents found John’s truck stuck on the beach.  During their attempt to assist John with his truck, agents noticed that John was under the influence of alcohol.  Agents then administered a field sobriety test to John, which he allegedly failed.  John refused to take a breathalyzer test.

Agents impounded John’s truck and seized his shotgun, which failed to have a minimum barrel length of 18 inches required under law.  John also allegedly confessed to throwing beer bottles on the beach that were nearby his truck.

It is illegal to possess any firearm or glass bottles while on the Elmer’s Island Wildlife Refuge.  John was also charged for a DWI in November of 2011 in which he refused to take a breathalyzer test.

Second offense DWI carries a fine up to $1,000 and six months in jail.  Failing to take a second breathalyzer test within five years brings a $300 to $1,000 fine and between 10 days and six months in jail.

Possession of an illegal firearm brings up to a $10,000 fine and up to 10 years in jail.

Possession of a firearm on Elmer’s Island Wildlife Refuge carries a fine between $100 and $350 and up to 60 days in jail.  Possession of glass bottles on Elmer’s Island Wildlife Refuge carries a $50 fine and up to 15 days in jail.  Simple littering brings a fine up to $75 or up to eight hours of community service in a litter abatement program.

Agents participating in the case were Senior Agents Douglas Danna and Cody Soileau.

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

Fall Shrimp Season to Close in Zone 1

Release Date: 01/30/2012

La. inshore and offshore waters closed to shrimping effective 2/2/12 at official sunset.

 

Jan. 30, 2012  –Today, Secretary Robert Barham of the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) announced the fall shrimp season will close in the remaining portion of Shrimp Management Zone 1, excluding the open waters of Breton and Chandeleur sounds, at official sunset on February 2, 2012. 

The Department took action in December to extend the fall shrimp season in these waters, but current sampling conducted by LDWF fisheries biologists indicates that average white shrimp size in these waters is smaller than 100 count per pound.  This action protects these small, white shrimp and provides increased opportunity for growth to larger, more valuable sizes.  It also protects juvenile brown shrimp which begin to recruit into these waters in early spring. 

Effective with this closure, shrimping will only be allowed in:

  • The open waters of Breton and Chandeleur Sounds as described by the double-rig line in R.S.56:495.1.(A)2, and
  • State outside waters seaward of the inside/outside shrimp line east of the U.S. Coast Guard navigational light off the northwest shore of Caillou Boca at 29 degrees 03 minutes 10 seconds north latitude and 90 degrees 50 minutes 27 seconds west longitude, and
  • State outside waters seaward of the inside/outside shrimp line west of Freshwater Bayou Canal at 92 degrees 18 minutes 33 seconds west longitude

A map of those waters which will remain open to shrimping is available on the LDWF website.  Click here.

The shrimping industry is the most valuable commercial fishery in Louisiana, averaging over 8,700 licensed recreational and commercial shrimpers annually over the past five years. 

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/ldwffbor follow us on Twitter @LDWF.

For more information, please contact Laura Wooderson at lwooderson@wlf.la.gov or (225) 610-2363.

LDWF Announces Closure of Oyster Season on All Public Oyster Areas East of the Mississippi River

Release Date: 01/30/2012

 

Jan. 30, 2012 –Today, Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) Secretary Robert Barham signed an order to close the oyster season on all public oyster areas east of the Mississippi River.  These closures are to take effect at one-half hour after sunset on Thursday, February 2, 2012.

The areas are being closed to protect the resource, based on current harvest pressure and estimated low oyster stock size. 

All other details, rules and regulations of the 2011/2012 oyster season as established by previous actions of the Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries Commission and the LDWF Secretary remain in effect 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/ldwffbor follow us on Twitter @LDWF.

For more information, please contact Laura Wooderson at lwooderson@wlf.la.govor (225) 610-2363.

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