LDWF News

LDWF News Release

December 2016 Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries Commission Meeting Agenda

Release Date: 11/28/2016

The next regular Commission meeting will be held at 10:00 AM on Thursday, December 1, 2016, at Louisiana Tech University – Davison Athletic Center, 1454 West Alabama, 3rd Floor, Ruston, LA 71270

The following items will be discussed:

1.     Call to Order         

2.     Pledge of Allegiance

3.     Roll Call

4.     Adoption of November 03, 2016 Commission Meeting Minutes

5.     Commission Special Announcements / Personal Privilege         

6.     Enforcement Reports November, 2016 – Captain Edward Skena

7.     Receive and Consider a Declaration of Emergency for the Partial Closure of State Outside Waters to Shrimping – Jeffrey Marx, Biologist

8.     Receive an Update on the 2016-2017 Oyster Season in Calcasieu Lake – Patrick Banks, Assistant Secretary of Fisheries

9.     Set March, 2017 Commission Meeting Date

10.  Receive Public Comments

11.  Adjournment 

A live audio/video stream of this meeting will be available via Gotowebinar.com.  To attend this meeting via webinar visit: 

https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/3187799048217693955

After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the webinar.

 

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.la.gov. To receive recreational or commercial fishing email and text alerts, signup at http://www.wlf.la.gov/signup.

LDWF Commercial Fishing Licenses Available in Lake Charles

Release Date: 11/22/2016

The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries will offer new commercial fishing licenses and renewals in Lake Charles, La. from December 6 through 8 at the Lake Charles office located at 1213 North Lakeshore Drive. Licenses will be available for purchase from 8 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.
 
Commercial fishermen are reminded that acceptable forms of payment will include personal checks, money orders and cash. To avoid processing delays, those purchasing license are asked to bring their license renewal notices with them.
 
First-time applicants can apply by mail or in-person. Renewals can be completed online at www.wlf.la.gov.
 
When applying in person, you must provide the following:
•   Resident applicants must provide proof of residency such as a Louisiana driver’s license (held continuously for 12 months), voter’s registration, vehicle registration and state income tax. 
•   Non-resident applicants must provide proof of residency from their domiciliary state, such as a driver’s license, voter’s registration, vehicle registration and state income tax.
•   Applicants applying for a license in a business name must provide documentation showing proof of valid federal tax ID# assigned to business name and proof of authorized signature or an occupational license will be required.
 
For commercial license inquiries, contact (225) 765-2898.

 

Feral Hog Management Advisory Task Force to Hold First Meeting Nov. 30

Release Date: 11/21/2016

Nov. 21, 2016 - The Feral Hog Management Advisory Task Force, created by House Concurrent Resolution No. 9 during the 2016 regular session of the Louisiana Legislature, will hold its first meeting Nov. 30, 2016, at 9 a.m. at Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) headquarters, located at 2000 Quail Drive in Baton Rouge.
 
The eleven members of the task force represent the different entities spelled out in the resolution by the legislature. Nominations were solicited from those entities and presented to LDWF Secretary Charlie Melancon and/or Louisiana Department of Agriculture and Forestry Commissioner Mike Strain for selection and appointment to the task force.
 
For more information on this meeting or the task force, please contact Dr. Jim LaCour, LDWF Wildlife Veterinarian, at jmlacour@wlf.la.gov or 225-765-2346.

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Aerial Herbicide Treatment Scheduled for Lake Bistineau on Monday, November 21

Release Date: 11/18/2016

Helicopters are expected to hover over Lake Bistineau next week for an aerial herbicide application to treat giant salvinia.  The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries has scheduled the aerial application for Monday, November 21 to address the large, open areas containing the invasive plant.

The aerial application will be used to treat selected areas where giant salvinia growth is particularly heavy, encompassing roughly 500 acres in total. Designated spray areas include the Catfish Pond, between Fairview Point and the mouth of Little Red Chute Bayou.

With cooler temperatures forecasted, results may be delayed, but the effectiveness of the herbicide will not be impacted. Results are expected to be visible within three days, but it could take up to three weeks for the plants to sink completely.

These aquatic herbicides are approved for use by the EPA.

Recreational activities will not be restricted on the lake.  LDWF personnel will be on hand to ensure that no boaters are in the areas to be sprayed. 

 

Gates at Mayhaw and Millcreek Roads in Camp Beauregard WMA Closed

Release Date: 11/18/2016

Nov. 18, 2016 – The gates at Mayhaw and Millcreek roads in the Camp Beauregard Wildlife Management Area (WMA) have been closed by the Louisiana National Guard, the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) announced. The Buckhorn Road gate will be the only vehicle access point to the interior road system of the WMA.
 
The WMA may be closed daily due to military activities. Consult maps posted on self-clearing permit stations for closed areas. Should no maps be posted, call Camp Beauregard Range Control at 318-290-6300 or 318-290-6301 for information on open areas before entering the WMA.
 
Camp Beauregard WMA is located on 12,500 acres in northeast Rapides and southeast Grant parishes eight miles north of Alexandria. It is owned by the Louisiana National Guard, which uses it as a troop training facility. However, the WMA offers public hunting for squirrel, turkey, deer, rabbit, quail, dove, ducks and woodcock.
 
For more information and directions to Camp Beauregard WMA, visit the LDWF web site at http://www.wlf.louisiana.gov/wma/32652 or contact Jeff Johnson at 318-371-3050 or jjohnson@wlf.la.gov .

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OYSTER HARVEST TO CLOSE IN HACKBERRY BAY

Release Date: 11/17/2016

The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) has announced that all oyster harvest shall close at one half hour after sunset on Sunday, November 20, 2016 on the Hackberry Bay Public Oyster Seed Reservation (POSR) in Jefferson and Lafourche Parishes. Recent harvest pressure has depleted the limited supply of oyster resources in this public oyster area.  Protection of the remaining oyster resources is in the long-term best interest of the oyster populations in this area.

The Commission authorized Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries’ Secretary Charles J. Melancon to take emergency action to close areas, on an as-needed basis, based on biological data or if enforcement problems are encountered.  The Secretary was also authorized to take emergency action to reopen areas previously closed if the threat to the resource has ended and to open areas if substantial oyster resources are located. 

To view current oyster season maps visit: http://www.wlf.louisiana.gov/fishing/commerical-oyster-seasons

Public notice of any opening, delay, or closure of a season will be provided at least 72 hours prior to such action, unless such closure is ordered by the Louisiana Department of Health and Hospitals for public health concerns.

SEED OYSTER HARVEST TO CLOSE EAST OF MISSISSIPPI RIVER

Release Date: 11/17/2016

The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) has announced that seed oyster harvest for bedding purposes shall close at one half hour after sunset on Sunday, November 20, 2016 on public oyster seed grounds east of the Mississippi River in St. Bernard Parish. Recent harvest pressure has depleted the limited supply of oyster resources in these public oyster areas.  Protection of the remaining oyster resources is in the long-term best interest of the oyster populations in these areas.

The Commission authorized Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries’ Secretary Charles J. Melancon to take emergency action to close areas, on an as-needed basis, based on biological data or if enforcement problems are encountered.  The Secretary was also authorized to take emergency action to reopen areas previously closed if the threat to the resource has ended and to open areas if substantial oyster resources are located. 

To view oyster season maps visit: http://www.wlf.louisiana.gov/fishing/commerical-oyster-seasons

Public notice of any opening, delay, or closure of a season will be provided at least 72 hours prior to such action, unless such closure is ordered by the Louisiana Department of Health and Hospitals for public health concerns.

State Agencies Issue Advisory for Bayou D’Inde, Portions of the Calcasieu Ship Channel, and the Upper Calcasieu Estuary

Release Date: 11/17/2016

Baton Rouge, La - The Louisiana Department of Health, Department of Environmental Quality and Department of Wildlife and Fisheries have issued a new advisory concerning fish and shellfish for Bayou D’Inde, the Calcasieu Estuary and the Calcasieu Ship Channel.

For Bayou D’Inde and the Calcasieu Ship Channel between channel markers #31 and #33, state agencies advise the following:

·      Do not eat catfish

·      Do not eat crab fat

·      Limit consumption of other fish and shellfish to two meals per month

For the portion of the Calcasieu Estuary that lies north of channel marker #11 and is not already covered by the Bayou D’Inde/Calcasieu Ship Channel Advisory, state agencies advise the following:

·      Do not eat crab fat

This advisory is in response to recent sampling and analysis of finfish and shellfish and is based on sampling data from 2011-2015. Shrimp, blue crab, oysters and finfish were tested for polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), dioxins and furans. Elevated levels of PCBs, dioxins and furans were found in the tissue (meat/fillet) of some species. Unacceptable levels of PCBs, dioxins and furans were also found in crab hepatopancreas (fat).

This advisory is issued as a precaution. For more information regarding this advisory, contact the Department of Health at 1-888-293-7020 or visit www.ldh.la.gov/EatSafeFish.

 

Click here for an informational brochure entitled Eating Recreationally Caught Seafood in Louisiana: How to Choose, Clean and Cook Your Catch, or call 1-888-293-7020 to request copies of the brochure. 

Get Out and Fish! Event Scheduled for North Louisiana

Release Date: 11/16/2016

Fall fishing action kicks into high gear as the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries’ Get Out and Fish! event series heads to north Louisiana. Join us for an exciting opportunity to catch rainbow trout donated by Greer’s National Fish Hatchery. The event is scheduled for Saturday, December 10 fro 8 a.m. until noon at Kiroli Park at 820 Kiroli Road in West Monroe.
 
This free event hosted by Kiroli Park, the City of West Monroe and LDWF will include fun fishing activities for all ages including a mobile touch tank, casting inflatable and more.
The first 100 youth participants to register will receive a goody bag. You can pre-register for this event at www.wlf.la.gov/get-out-and-fish-1.  
 
In addition, every participant will be entered into a raffle drawing for various prizes.  Lunch will be provided by Catfish Charlie’s.
 
Fishing competition categories will include heaviest rainbow trout and heaviest “other” fish.  Age divisions include Little Angler (ages 8 and under), Junior Angler (ages 9 to 15) and Adult Angler (ages 16 and older).  Don’t forget to bring your own gear, bait and tackle, and an ice chest to keep your fish.
 
Participants 16 and older must possess a valid Louisiana fishing license. To purchase a fishing license online, visit https://www.la.wildlifelicense.com.
 
The Get Out and Fish! program seeks to increase the number of people with access to quality fishing. The event series was established to recruit new anglers to the sport of fishing and promote outdoor activities for future generations.
 
For event information, contact Megan MacMenamin at 225-765-2375 or mmacmenamin@wlf.la.gov.

LDWF Reminds Oyster Harvesters New Gear Requirements are in Effect

Release Date: 11/16/2016

The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries would like to remind oyster harvesters fishing in the public oyster areas of Louisiana that the following gear requirements are currently in effect.
 
The New Gear Restrictions (Act 133) limited the size and use of scrapers on public oyster areas (public oyster seed grounds, public oyster seed reservations, Calcasieu Lake public oyster area):

  • Scrapers must not be more than 54 inches in width (Calcasieu Lake maximum scraper width is 36 inches) measured along the tooth bar.
  • Scrapers cannot weigh more than 175 pounds. 
  • Diving boards, hydrofoils, and any other equipment intended to create downward pressure are now illegal.
  • Scraper teeth cannot be longer than 5 inches, with a minimum of 2 1/4 inch spacing from the center of one tooth to the next. A tooth shall not exceed 11/16 of an inch in diameter.
  • No more than two scrapers can be in use on any one vessel on public oyster grounds and reservations, although only one is allowed per vessel in the Calcasieu Lake public oyster area.
  • An oyster scraper bag must be single mesh with a minimum mesh size of 3 inches stretched.

These laws were passed during the 2016 legislative session and went into effect on August 1, 2016.
 
LDWF would also like to remind oyster harvesters of the new training requirement for the 2017 license year. All oyster harvesters will be required to complete an education program before applying for their 2017 oyster harvester license. This program consists of an in-depth training video, which all harvesters must watch in full and answer the accompanying questions with a minimum score of 80 percent. Harvesters will be required to take this program every three years. The required course training material can be found at http://www.wlf.louisiana.gov/oyster-harvester-training-videos.

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