LDWF News

LDWF News Release

Donated Artwork to Benefit Whooping Crane Re-Population Project

Release Date: 04/04/2013

April 4, 2013 presentation: (L to R) Kell McInnis, LWFF; Joe Combes, Chevron Gulf of Mexico Business Unit; and Bob Love, LDWF.
April 4, 2013 presentation: (L to R) Kell McInnis, Richard Zuschlag, R. C. Davis, Robert Barham, Blaise Zuschlag and Bob Love.

April 5, 2013 -- The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries’ (LDWF) whooping crane re-population project will benefit from artwork donated by two distinguished artists recognized Thursday by the Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries Commission.
 
Louisiana native R.C. “Chris” Davis and Canadian Robert “Bob” Bateman have each provided LDWF original paintings for the project. Prints of the Davis painting will be sold through the  Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries Foundation (LWFF) with all proceeds supporting the state’s efforts to restore this endangered species.
 
Davis’ artwork depicting cranes in flight over a south Louisiana marsh and Bateman’s painting of a pair of cranes were on display at today’s meeting and presented to two corporate sponsors who have provided support for the whooping crane project during the first two years of the multi-year initiative.
 
“This high quality artwork will greatly enhance the public awareness of this fascinating species, which is important because the species has been absent from this state for over 60 years,” said Bob Love, LDWF Coastal and Nongame Resources Division administrator.
 
Chevron was honored with a Bateman print for a grant which funded the project’s public awareness and education campaign in 2012.  Joe Combes, Ultra Deep Gas Drilling Manager, Chevron Gulf of Mexico Business Unit, received the print on behalf of Chevron.  Acadian Ambulance’s Richard Zuschlag received a Davis print for the company’s fundraising efforts on behalf of the Foundation.
 
“The ongoing support by Chevron and Acadian Ambulance Services, along with other corporate and private donor support, is critical to the success of this project,” said Kell McInnis, LWFF executive director. “The foundation is proud of its role as a conduit through which funds from the private sector can allow them to become partners in this long term restoration venture.”
 
LDWF is now in year three of the multi-year project based at the White Lake Wetlands Conservation Area location in Vermilion Parish.  White Lake provides temporary shelter for the cranes delivered as juveniles from the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) Patuxent Wildlife Research Center in Laurel, Md. Twenty seven adult whooping cranes are currently in the wild on the Louisiana landscape.  LDWF is already preparing for the next shipment of additional juvenile cranes. The plan is to receive annual cohorts until there is sufficient natural reproduction to sustain our new population. 
 
LDWF continues to work cooperatively with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, USGS, the Louisiana Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Unit, and the International Crane Foundation to restore the species within the state. Project funding is derived from LDWF species restoration dedicated funds, federal funds and significant amounts of private/corporate donations which are facilitated by the LWFF. Donations offset the costs of transmitter tracking equipment, maintenance of holding pens at White Lake, biologist salaries and public outreach and education initiatives.
 
For information on making donations to the project and obtaining prints of the R.C. Davis artwork “Taking Flight”, visit the LWFF website at www.lawff.org . All proceeds from sales of the paintings will be dedicated to the project.
 
The LWFF is a non-profit public, charitable foundation, tax exempt under Section 501(C)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code, formed to provide a means for individuals and corporations to become partners with the Department and Commission in the challenge of conserving Louisiana's wildlife and fish resources.
 
For more information, Bo Boehringer at 225-765-5115 or bboehringer@wlf.la.gov .

 

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Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries Commission Adopts Notice of Intent on Yo-Yo and Trotline Regulations on Specified Lakes

Release Date: 04/04/2013

(April 4, 2013) – The Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries Commission, during their monthly meeting today, approved a notice of intent to modify regulations for the use of yo-yos and trotlines on Black Lake, Clear Lake, Prairie Lake, Caddo Lake, Chicot Lake, D'Arbonne Lake and Lake St. Joseph.
 
The proposed change will only apply to the waterbodies listed above and will address an ongoing problem.  The current rule only prohibits metal objects from being placed to anchor a yo-yo or trigger device.    The change would prohibit the placement of any artificial object to anchor a yo-yo or trigger device. 
 
To view the full notice of intent, please visit here.
 
Interested persons may submit written comments relative to the proposed rule by June 1, 2013, to Mike Wood, Office of Fisheries, Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries, P.O. Box 98000, Baton Rouge, LA 70898-9000 or via email at mwood@wlf.la.gov.
 
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 press inquires, contact Ashley Wethey at awethey@wlf.la.gov or (225) 765-2396.
 

 

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Oyster Season to Open in a Portion of the Public Oyster Seed Grounds

Release Date: 04/02/2013

Oyster Season to Open in a Portion of the Public Oyster Seed Grounds

(April 2, 2013) – The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries will open the oyster season in a portion of the public oyster seed grounds east of the Mississippi River on Monday, April 8 at one-half hour before sunrise. 
 
The oyster season was originally scheduled to open in this area on October 29, 2012, but was delayed to protect recently –settled small oysters, called spat. 
 
The upcoming opening includes the area of public oyster seed grounds east of the Mississippi River, south of the Mississippi River Gulf Outlet, and north of a line of latitude at 29 degrees 34 minutes 48.0 seconds north, and will be restricted to the harvest of oysters three inches in size and greater, for market purposes only.
 
The Bay Gardene Public Oyster Seed Reservation and the recent oyster cultch plants in Lake Fortuna and Black Bay within the following coordinates shall remain closed:
 
Lake Fortuna (2012) – St. Bernard Parish

  • 29 degrees 39 minutes 08.04 seconds N
    89 degrees 30 minutes 28.93 seconds W
  • 29 degrees 38 minutes 33.31 seconds N
    89 degrees 29 minutes 15.45 seconds W
  • 29 degrees 38 minutes 10.57 seconds N
    89 degrees 29 minutes 40.71 seconds W
  • 29 degrees 39 minutes 04.41 seconds N
    89 degrees 30 minutes 32.61 seconds W

 
Black Bay (2013) – Plaquemines Parish

  • 29 degrees 37 minutes 43.15 seconds N
    89 degrees 34 minutes 09.14 seconds W
  • 29 degrees 37 minutes 43.15 seconds N
    89 degrees 32 minutes 51.49 seconds W
  • 29 degrees 36 minutes 34.12 seconds N
    89 degrees 32 minutes 51.49 seconds W
  • 29 degrees 36 minutes 34.12 seconds N
    89 degrees 34 minutes 09.72 seconds W

 
The Commission authorized LDWF Secretary Robert Barham 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.  Recent biological sampling by LDWF has indicated healthy spat growth in this area, and an opening would allow for increased economic opportunities for the Louisiana oyster industry.
 
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.
 
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 inquires, contact Ashley Wethey at awethey@wlf.la.gov or (225) 765-2396.
 
 
 

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REVISED Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries Commission Meeting Agenda

Release Date: 04/02/2013

The next regular Commission Meeting will be held at 9:30 AM on Thursday April 4, 2013, at the Waddill Outdoor Education Center, 4142 North Flannery Rd, Baton Rouge, LA 70814.

The following items will be discussed:

1. Roll Call

2.  Approval of Minutes of March 7, 2013

3.  Commission Special Announcements/Personal Privilege

4.  Artist Donation to Louisiana Wildlife & Fisheries Foundation and Presentation to  Guests

 5.  To Hear Enforcement & Aviation Reports for March

 6.  Hear a Report on Coastal Master Plan – Garrett Graves, CPRA          

 7.  To Receive Public Comments on Notice of Intent for the 2013-2015 Hunting Seasons Dates  

 8.  To Receive Public Comments on Notice of Intent for General WMA Hunting Rules and Regulations  

 9.  To Receive Public Comments on Notice of Intent for DMAP Fee Corrections   

10.  To Consider a Notice of Intent to Amend the Alligator Regulations to Change the Effective Date of Alligator Hunter Licenses 

11.  To Consider a Notice of Intent Amending the Regulations Governing Yo-Yo Mechanical Fishing Devices 

12. To Consider a Resolution on Gear for Shrimp Trawling between Three and Nine Nautical Miles  

13. To Consider a Resolution to Delegate Authority to LDWF's Secretary to Take Any Legal Action Necessary to Oppose NOAA’s Emergency Rule Governing Red Snapper

14. Set August 2013 Meeting Date

15. Receive Public Comments

16. Executive Session to Discuss Prospective Litigation Relative to Return of Artificial Reef Fund Monies

17. Adjournment

 

 

REVISED Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries Commission Meeting Agenda

Release Date: 03/28/2013

The next regular Commission Meeting will be held at 9:30 AM on Thursday April 4, 2013, at the Waddill Outdoor Education Center, 4142 North Flannery Rd, Baton Rouge, LA 70814.

The following items will be discussed:

1.  Roll Call

2.  Approval of Minutes of March 7, 2013

3.  Commission Special Announcements/Personal Privilege

4.  Artist Donation to Louisiana Wildlife & Fisheries Foundation and Presentation to guests           

5.  To Hear Enforcement & Aviation Reports for March

6.  Hear a Report on Coastal Master Plan – Garrett Graves, CPRA          

7.  To Receive Public Comments on Notice of Intent for the 2013-2015 Hunting Seasons Dates   

8.  To Receive Public Comments on Notice of Intent for General WMA Hunting Rules and Regulations   

9.  To Receive Public Comments on Notice of Intent for DMAP Fee Corrections    

10. To Consider a Notice of Intent to Amend the Alligator Regulations to Change the Effective Date of Alligator Hunter Licenses  

11. To Consider a Notice of Intent Amending the Regulations Governing Yo-Yo Mechanical Fishing Devices  

12.  To Consider a Resolution on Gear for Shrimp Trawling between Three and Nine Nautical Miles   

13. To Consider a Notice of Intent Regarding the National Oceanic Atmospheric Association(NOAA) Fishing Proposal

14. To Consider a Notice of Intent Regarding the Reciprocal Agreement with Mississippi for the Regional Management Traversing Agreement

15.  Set August 2013 Meeting Date

16.  Receive Public Comments

17.  Executive Session to Discuss Prospective Litigation Relative to Return of Artificial Reef Fund Monies

18.  Adjournment

 

Price Lake Road on Rockefeller Wildlife Refuge to Close Temporarily for Construction of Fishing Piers, Walkways

Release Date: 03/28/2013

March 28, 2013 -- The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) is advising all visitors to Rockefeller Wildlife Refuge that Price Lake Road, a primary access point for public outdoor recreation on the western end of the refuge, will be closed Monday, April 1, 2013 until further notice.

This road closure is necessary due to a $1.2 million construction project that will provide three fishing piers with extended walkway access for recreational fishing, crabbing and shrimping.  The construction project will take approximately six months to complete. Construction activities will temporarily block vehicular access to fishing, crabbing and shrimping areas along the road.

All other canals and public access areas on the refuge, located in coastal Cameron and Vermilion parishes, will offer alternative entry points for public access from official sunrise to sunset. Other areas available for public access include the East End Boat Launch/Joseph Harbor Canal and East End Locks Rd., both located just over three miles east of the refuge headquarters building, as well as Rollover Landing which features a private boat ramp with launch fee along the refuge’s eastern boundary toward Pecan Island.

For more information about Rockefeller Wildlife Refuge, contact Tom Hess at 337-491-2593 or thess@wlf.la.gov.

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.

 

 

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LDWF Agents Busy During Opening Weekend of Turkey Season

Release Date: 03/28/2013

Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) Enforcement Division agents made six turkey baiting cases during the opening weekend of the 2013 turkey hunting season.

The six cases were made in East Feliciana, St. Helena, and Livingston parishes from March 23-25.

Agents cited Jerry Harris, 42, of Zachary on March 23 in East Feliciana Parish for allegedly hunting turkey over a baited area, hunting with an unplugged shotgun, failing to comply with turkey tagging regulations and not possessing a turkey stamp.

Randall Foto, 46, and Edward Philippe, 45, both of Mandeville, were cited for allegedly hunting turkey over a baited area in Livingston Parish on March 23.

Bobby Valentene, 48, from Hammond, was cited for allegedly hunting turkey over a baited area in St. Helena Parish on March 23.

Agents also cited Warren Womack, 69, from Clinton, and Cory Edwards, from Jackson, in East Feliciana Parish for allegedly hunting turkey over a baited area on March 25.

According to the 2013 Turkey Regulations pamphlet, no person shall hunt or take turkeys by the aid of baiting or on or over a baited area.  Hunters are not allowed to place, expose, deposit or scatter corn, wheat or other grain, salt or other feed to lure turkeys to their hunting area.

Also, turkey hunters are required to possess Louisiana basic hunting and big game licenses, Louisiana wild turkey permit and turkey tags.  In addition, shotguns capable of holding over three shells must be plugged with a one piece filler.

Hunting turkeys over a baited area and hunting without an unplugged gun each bring a $250 to $500 fine and up to 90 days in jail for each offense.  Failing to comply with turkey tagging regulations carries a $100 to $350 fine and up to 60 days in jail.  Not possessing a turkey stamp brings a $50 fine and up to 15 days in jail.

LDWF agents involved in these cases are Lt. Will Roberts, Sgt. Guy Adams, Sgt. Randy Lanoux, Sgt. Toby Miller, Senior Agent Clay Marques, Senior Agent Ronny Robbins, Senior Agent Garrett Kimble, Senior Agent Carl Armstrong, Senior Agent Brody Roberts and Senior Agent Terry Hicks.

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

Public Waterfowl Hunting Meeting Set for April 4 in Monroe

Release Date: 03/28/2013

March 28, 2013 -- Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries Commissioner Ronny Graham and Louisiana Dept. of Wildlife and Fisheries Waterfowl Study Leader Larry Reynolds will be guest speakers at a Public Waterfowl Hunting Forum to be held on Thursday, April 4 in Monroe.

The meeting will be held at the Marriott Courtyard, next to Pecanland Mall, at 4915 Pecanland Mall Drive, Monroe, LA 71203, starting at 5:30 p.m.

The meeting will provide information on the 2013 Louisiana Waterfowl Hunter Survey being conducted statewide from April through July, a discussion on potential waterfowl hunting season dates for 2013-2014, and updates on current waterfowl issues. Attendees will then be able to ask questions and provide comments on any waterfowl-related topics.

This is a free public forum, but RSVPs are requested so organizers can prepare for an approximate number of attendeesRSVPs should be directed to Ben Peters, Jr. at benpetersjr@bellsouth.net , Billy Haddad at bhaddad@ctbonline.com,  Ethan Hunt at eah@dfklaw.com  or  Richard Bordelon at  Richard@grahambordelon.com .

For more information, contact Larry Reynolds at 225-765-0456 or lreynolds@wlf.la.gov .

 

 

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Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries Commission Meeting

Release Date: 03/27/2013

The next regular Commission Meeting will be held at 9:30 AM on Thursday April 4, 2013, at the Waddill Outdoor Education Center, 4142 North Flannery Rd, Baton Rouge, LA 70814.

The following items will be discussed:

1.  Roll Call

2.  Approval of Minutes of March 7, 2013

3.  Commission Special Announcements/Personal Privilege

4.  Artist Donation to Louisiana Wildlife & Fisheries Foundation and Presentation to Guests           

5.  To Hear Enforcement & Aviation Reports for March

6.  Hear a Report on Coastal Master Plan – Garrett Graves, CPRA         

7.  To Receive Public Comments on Notice of Intent for the 2013-2015 Hunting Seasons Dates 

8.  To Receive Public Comments on Notice of Intent for General WMA Hunting Rules and Regulations   

9.  To Receive Public Comments on Notice of Intent for DMAP Fee Corrections    

10.  To Consider a Notice of Intent to Amend the Alligator Regulations to Change the Effective Date of Alligator Hunter Licenses  

11.  To Consider a Notice of Intent Amending the Regulations Governing Yo-Yo Mechanical Fishing Devices  

12.  To Consider a Resolution on Gear for Shrimp Trawling between Three and Nine Nautical Miles   

13.  To Consider a Notice of Intent Regarding the National Oceanic Atmospheric Association (NOAA) Fishing Proposal

14.   Set August 2013 Meeting Date

15.  Receive Public Comments

16.  Executive Session to Discuss Prospective Litigation Relative to Return of Artificial Reef Fund Monies

17.  Adjournment

 

 

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Port Sulphur Man Charged with Attempted First Degree Murder

Release Date: 03/27/2013

Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) Enforcement Division agents arrested a Port Sulphur man for attempted first-degree murder of a LDWF agent, aggravated assault, resisting an officer, public intimidation and taking oysters from a polluted area on March 26.

With the aid of Louisiana State Police and the Plaquemines Parish Sheriff’s Office (PPSO), LDWF agents arrested Jonathan K. Ragas, 50, at his home in Port Sulphur and booked him into the Plaquemines Parish Jail.

The arrest stems from an incident that occurred on March 20 when Ragas was stopped by an LDWF agent and PPSO marine division deputies who were assisting in the patrol.  The agent and deputies found Ragas taking oysters from polluted waters.

When the LDWF agent attempted to board Ragas’ vessel, Ragas exhibited violent behavior toward the agent and would not allow the agent to board the vessel.  At one point during the encounter Ragas brandished a hatchet toward the LDWF agent in an aggressive manner.  After repeated attempts to board the vessel and because of officer safety concerns, the agent and deputies decided to detain Ragas at a later date with an arrest warrant.

This is the sixth time that Ragas has been charged by LDWF agents for taking oysters from an unapproved area.  This also makes the third time that Ragas has been charged for assaulting an LDWF agent.

Attempted first-degree murder carries a penalty of life imprisonment at hard labor without benefit of parole, probation or suspension of sentence.  Aggravated assault brings up to a $1,000 fine and six months of jail time.  Resisting an officer carries up to a $500 fine and six months of jail time.  Public intimidation brings up to a $1,000 fine and five years in jail with or without hard labor.  Taking oysters from an unapproved area brings up to a $950 fine and 120 days in jail.

Agents participating in the case are Sgt. Adam Young, Lt. Eddie Skena, Sgt. Jason Russo, and Senior Agents Villere Reggio, Robert Cosse Jr., Gary Pierce, and Mitch Saunders.  Also assisting in the case are Plaquemines Parish Sheriff’s Office Lt. Gerald Cormier and Deputy Chad Lafrance and from Louisiana State Police Lt. Dean Behrens, Sgt. Joseph Piglia, Trooper Gus Bethea, and
Trooper Kory Borcheding.

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

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