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LDWF News Release

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.

Agenda For Commission Meeting

Release Date: 01/30/2012

The next regular Commission Meeting will be held at 9:30 AM on Thursday, February 2, 2012, in the Louisiana Room at the Wildlife and Fisheries Building, 2000 Quail Drive, Baton Rouge, LA.

The following items will be discussed:

1.  Roll Call

2.  Approval of Minutes of January 5, 2012

3.  Commission Special Announcements/Personal Privilege

4.   To hear Enforcement & Aviation Reports/January – Joey Broussard

5.  To receive and consider Notice of Intent on 2013 – 14 Hunting Season Dates  - Randy Myers

6.  To receive and consider Notice of Intent on General/WMA Hunting Regulations – Randy Myers

7.  To receive presentation of Current and Upcoming Inshore Reef Projects – David Cresson, CCA

8.To receive presentation of Annual Stock Assessment Report for Striped Mullet – Harry Blanchet

9. To consider Notice of Intent to Establish a Commercial Netting season on False River Lake – Rachel Walley

10. Set June 2012 Meeting Date

11. Receive Public Comments

12.  Executive Session to Discuss Prospective Litigation relative to return of Artificial Reef Fund Monies

13. Adjournment

 

 

Missing Body of Baton Rouge Man found on Bogue Chitto River

Release Date: 01/28/2012

 

Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) Enforcement Division agents found the body of a missing man on the Bogue Chitto River in St. Tammany Parish this morning, Jan. 28.

Agents recovered the body of William Holloway, 63, at 8 a.m. from the river around a mile in a half downriver from where they found his capsized vessel on Dec. 28, 2011.  Campers near the Bogue Chitto River alerted LDWF agents of Holloway’s body in the river this morning.  Search teams found his wife, Kathy Holloway, 61, on Jan. 12 about a quarter of a mile from the capsized vessel.

LDWF agents along with the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office (STSO) and U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) have searched for the couple since Dec. 28 when a passing boater on the Bogue Chitto found a capsized vessel at 10 a.m.  The last known contact the Holloways had was at 3 p.m. on Dec. 27.  The Holloways were camping on the Bogue Chitto NWR.

The 14-foot aluminum flat bottom boat was found about a mile from the boat launch at Lock No. 3 Road on the Pearl River Navigational Canal.  LDWF retrieved the boat and is investigating the cause of this boating incident.

Search crews deployed sonar technology to search the water, helicopters to search the surrounding land and banks, dragging equipment and search dogs.

Kathy and William’s bodies have been turned over to the St. Tammany Parish Coroner’s Office for autopsy to determine official causes of death.

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

LDWF Announces 2012 Commercial Season For Non-Sandbar Large Coastal Sharks

Release Date: 01/26/2012

January 26, 2012 – Today the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries announced the 2012 commercial season for Non-Sandbar Large Coastal Sharks will open in Louisiana waters on February 15.  

In the spring, the commercial and recreational seasons for the harvest of all sharks in Louisiana waters will close from 12:01 a.m. April 1, 2012 until 12:01 p.m. July 1, 2012, due to an existing fixed closure to protect shark pupping.  

During the open season, commercial harvest of Non-Sandbar Large Coastal Sharks and Pelagic Sharks are regulated by the existing federal and state rules regarding trip limits, allowable species and requirements for permits and landings.

The Non-Sandbar Large Coastal Shark group is composed of the great hammerhead, scalloped hammerhead, smooth hammerhead, nurse shark, blacktip shark, bull shark, lemon shark, silky shark, spinner shark and tiger shark.  While sandbar shark are a member of the Large Coastal Shark group, only specifically designated federally permitted vessels may take sandbar shark while operating under conditions of that permit. 

Commercial fishing for Non-Blacknose Small Coastal Sharks remains open in Louisiana waters currently and will remain open until the federal quota is met.  The Non-Blacknose Small Coastal Shark group is composed of bonnethead shark, Atlantic sharpnose shark, blacknose shark and finetooth.  Last year the commercial fishing season for Non-Blacknose Small Coastal Sharks remained open for all of 2011, as the quota was not met.

There is no allowable harvest at any time for all Prohibited Species.  Shark species falling in the category include Basking shark, white shark, bigeye sand tiger, sand tiger, whale shark, smalltooth sawfish, largetooth sawfish, Atlantic angel shark, Caribbean sharpnose shark, smalltail shark, bignose shark, Caribbean reef shark, dusky shark, Galapagos shark, narrowtooth shark, night shark, bigeye sixgill shark, bigeye thresher shark, longfin mako, sevengill shark and sixgill shark.

For more information contact Jason Adriance at (504)284-2032 or jadriance@wlf.louisiana.gov. For press inquiries contact Laura Wooderson at (225)610-2363 or lwooderson@wlf.la.gov

 

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