L.D.W.F. News

L.D.W.F. News Release

Agenda Announced for Louisiana Wildlife & Fisheries Commission September Meeting

Release Date: 08/26/2010

The next regular Commission Meeting will be held at 9:30 AM on Thursday, September 2, 2010, 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 July 14, 2010 and August 5, 2010

3. Commission Special Announcements/Personal Privilege

4. To receive and hear check presentation to Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries Foundation

5. To receive and hear Update on Oil Spill and Current Response Efforts

6. To receive and hear Presentation of Boating Law Enforcement Office of the Year

7. To receive and hear Enforcement & Aviation Reports/August

8. To receive and hear Update on Whooping Crane Reintroduction Proposal

9. To receive and hear Office of Wildlife Oil Spill Presentation

10. To receive and consider Declaration of Emergency and Notice of Intent on Fisheries Closures due to Oil Spill

11. To receive and consider Notice of Intent to Adopt Gear Regulations for Lafourche Lake in Caldwell Parish

12. To receive and consider a Notice of Intent to modify the rule for Commercial Harvest of Spotted Seatrout - Commercial Season and Places

13. To receive and consider a Notice of Intent to Amend Oyster Survey Rules as a Result of Act 392 of the 2010 Regular Session

14. Set January 2011 Meeting Date

15. Receive Public Comments

16. Adjournment

2010-256

JEFFERSON PARISH MEN CITED FOR OVERLIMIT BASS

Release Date: 08/25/2010

Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) Enforcement Division agents cited two Jefferson parish men on Aug. 21 for allegedly possessing over the legal limit of bass in St. Charles Parish.

The agents were conducting surveillance near Lake Cataouatche in St. Charles Parish when they observed Elvin J. Rome, 53, of Marrero, and Richard Doucet, 52, of Westwego, rapidly catching fish. The agents continued surveillance until the subjects stopped fishing and followed them to a camp.

When the agents contacted the subjects, they discovered 92 black bass in their possession. The daily limit for largemouth bass is 10 per person.

The penalty for over the limit of black bass is a fine up to $350, or jail time up to 30 days, or both plus court costs. A court order restitution for the value of the illegally taken fish will also be filed with the case. The fish were seized and later donated to a local charity.

Agents involved in the investigation were Sgt. Ray Champagne, Senior Agent Tim Fox and Agent Terry Hicks.

For more information, contact Capt. Stephen McManus at 504-284-2023 or smcmanus@wlf.la.gov.
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Pearl River Man Cited for Second Offense D.W.I. in Lake Pontchartrain

Release Date: 08/25/2010

Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) Enforcement Division agents arrested a Pearl River man for allegedly driving a motorboat while under the influence (DWI) of alcohol on Aug. 21 in St. Tammany Parish.

LDWF Agents Austin Arteaga and Jared McIver were on patrol in Lake Pontchartrain near the Interstate 10 twin span when they observed a vessel driven by Kip E. Asmos traveling northbound towards Eden Isles. Agents Arteaga and McIver made contact with the vessel and performed a boating safety inspection. The agents observed Asmos drinking a beer and a five-gallon bucket full of empty beer cans in the boat.

Agents conducted a field sobriety test and after further questioning placed Asmos under arrest and transported him to the St. Tammany Parish Jail for second offense DWI.

The penalty for second offense DWI is a fine between $750 and $1,000, and imprisonment between 30 days and six months.

Agents participating in the case were Senior Agent Austin Arteaga and Sgt. Jared McIver.

For more information, contact Capt. Steve McManus at 504-284-2023 or smcmanus@wlf.la.gov.
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White Lake W.C.A. Youth Waterfowl Hunt Date Announced

Release Date: 08/24/2010

 

The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) will hold youth waterfowl hunts on the White Lake Wetlands Conservation Area (WCA) near Gueydan on Nov. 6 and 7.  LDWF will sponsor the hunts to provide a quality experience for young waterfowl hunters.

 

The participants in the hunts will be determined by a lottery drawing.  Applications for the lottery should be submitted to LDWF before close of business on Sept. 23, 2010.  One applicant will be selected from each of the seven geographic LDWF regions in the state and one participant will be selected from the state at large.

 

Applicants must be 15 years of age and younger.  Selected hunters must be accompanied in the blind by a parent or guardian, though the youth will be the only one permitted to possess a firearm.

 

Applications may be obtained by contacting LDWF's regional offices or by visiting the LDWF Web site at http://www.wlf.louisiana.gov/sites/default/files/pdf/lottery_hunt/32612-....  Completed applications may be delivered in person to Room 458 of the LDWF Building in Baton Rouge, or by mail.  The mailing address is: Department of Wildlife and Fisheries, Attention: White Lake Youth Waterfowl Hunt at P.O. Box 98000, Baton Rouge, LA 70898.

 

For more information, contact Wayne Sweeney at 337-479-1894.

 

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Louisiana Oyster Task Force to Meet August 27

Release Date: 08/24/2010

 

The Louisiana Oyster Task Force is scheduled to meet at 1 p.m. on Friday, August 27 at the UNO Advanced Technology Center located at 2021 Lakeshore Drive, Suite 210 in New Orleans.

The agenda is as follows:

I.                   Roll Call

II.                Approval of July 27, 2010 Minutes

III.             Treasury Report

                    A. Oyster Tag Sales

                    B. LOTF Financial Report & Budget for 2010-2011

IV.       Committee Reports

A.  Public and Private Oyster Grounds Committee

B.  Enforcement

C.  Legislative

D.  Research

E.  Coastal Restoration ? Re: Fresh Water Diversions ? Dan Coulon

F.  Marketing ? Re:  Budget for 2010-2011 ? Dana Brocato

 V.      Old Business

A.   Oyster Season Schedule

B.   BP Oil Spill Update

         1.  Claims Process

         2.  Oyster Lease Damages

VI.                   New Business

A.   RTI Oyster Study for ISSC ? Catherine Viator, Research Triangle Institute

B.   DHH Oyster Relay Rules, Suggested Changes ? David Guilbeau

C.   NOAA Biological Study Presentation - Heather Finley

D.   Oyster Lease Survey Changes - Raymond Impastato

E.   Public Seed Ground Rehabilitation

F.    Washington Mardi Gras ? Al Sunseri

G.   Taxes-concerning BP payments - Dan Coulon

VII.        Set Next Meeting

VIII.      Adjourn

For additional information, please contact Laura Deslatte at (225) 610-2363 orldeslatte@wlf.la.gov.

2010-253

Rockefeller Wildlife Refuge Temporary Closure Notification

Release Date: 08/24/2010

 

Beginning Sept.1, 2010, Rockefeller Wildlife Refuge will be closed each morning until 10 a.m. through Sept. 7 for the 2010 refuge alligator harvest.

The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) refuge in Cameron and Vermilion parishes conducts the annual harvest to remove alligators from public use areas on site. Once the site is open at 10 a.m., fishermen and other site visitors can enter the refuge, but are instructed not to disturb lines set by licensed alligator trappers.

All other refuge regulations will remain in effect during the temporary closure period. For more information on Rockefeller Wildlife Refuge, visit the LDWF website at www.wlf.la.gov.

For more information, contact Rockefeller Wildlife Refuge headquarters at 337-491-2593 or 337-538-2276.

2010-252

Fish Kill in MRGO Tied to Low Oxygen Levels

Release Date: 08/24/2010

 

Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) biologists investigating a fish kill in the Mississippi River Gulf Outlet (MRGO) found low oxygen levels to blame.  LDWF received several reports on Sunday, August 22 concerning a large fish kill around the MRGO, east of Hopedale. 

LDWF biologists have confirmed the kill is a result of natural events and is not associated with the Deepwater Horizon oil spill.  High nutrient content from the Mississippi River in combination with seasonal occurrences has been the cause of hypoxic conditions for years.  Although essential in fertilizing the estuaries, in some cases the nutrient load is too great and hypoxic conditions arise.   Hypoxic events typically occur in late summer to fall and are also associated with processes that bring deep low-oxygen water to the surface. 

Fish need an oxygen level of at least three parts per million to survive.  Measurements taken by LDWF staff at various samples sites showed less than one part per million of oxygen at the bottom of the water. A "borderline" oxygen level of perhaps three parts per million was found at the top.

The only large concentration of dead fish was noted in a bayou immediately adjacent to the MRGO.  An estimated 500 fish were found in the area. Based on the condition of the fish, they appeared to be roughly five days old.  Species observed included large red drum, sheepshead, hardhead catfish, spotted sea trout, croakers and stingray.

Seasonal fish kills are normally found in much of southern Louisiana associated with low oxygen events.  LDWF biologists expect these to be common in areas such as marinas, dead-end canals, and other areas with poor circulation.  LDWF investigates fish kills using long-standing protocols based on the available information. 

To report a fish kill or abnormality, contact the nearest LDWF office during business hours or the Operation Game Thief operator (1-800-442-2511) after hours.

Coastal area offices are listed below:

Slidell
61384 Fish Hatchery Road
Lacombe, LA 70461
Phone (985) 882-0027

New Orleans
2021 Lakeshore Drive, Suite 407
New Orleans, LA 70122
Phone (504) 284-2030

Bourg
Post Office Box 189
Bourg, LA 70343
Phone (985) 594-4139

New Iberia
2415 Darnall Road
New Iberia, LA 70560
Phone (337) 373-0032

 Lake Charles
1213 North Lakeshore Drive
Lake Charles, LA 70601
Phone (337) 491-2579

For more information contact Ashley Wethey at awethey@wlf.la.gov or 225-765-5113.

2010-254

L.D.W.F. Announces Significant Reopenings to Commercial Crabbing in Plaquemines, St. Bernard and Orleans Parishes

Release Date: 08/21/2010

 

Today, the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries, in coordination with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, has ordered an emergency reopening of commercial crabbing in areas east of the Mississippi River and the northern shore of Pass a Loutre that were previously closed due to the Deepwater Horizon oil spill.

Effective immediately today, August 21, all state inside and outside territorial waters east of the Mississippi River and north of the northern shore of Pass a Loutre and 29 degrees 12 minutes 40 seconds north latitude are open to the commercial harvest of crabs

LDWF Secretary Robert Barham ordered these reopenings following the completion of comprehensive testing by the FDA. The FDA advised that following extensive sensory testing and analytical chemistry results, the crab samples tested from previously closed areas are safe for consumption.

The following areas remain closed to all commercial fishing including commercial crabbing until further notice:

the portion of state inside and outside waters north of 29 degrees 59 minutes 30 seconds north latitude and south of the Mississippi/Louisiana state line from the Louisiana territorial sea boundary westward to 89 degrees 15 minutes 00 seconds west longitude, and 
the portion of state inside and outside waters north of 29 degrees 36 minutes 30 seconds north latitude and south of 29 degrees 59 minutes 30 seconds north latitude from the Louisiana territorial sea boundary westward to a line extending 1 mile west from the western shore of the Chandeleur Islands, and 
the portion of state inside waters north of 29 degrees 45 minutes 00 seconds north latitude and south of 29 degrees 59 minutes 30 seconds north latitude from 89 degrees 09 minutes 00 seconds west longitude westward to 89 degrees 15 minutes 00 seconds west longitude, and 
the portion of state inside waters north of 29 degrees 47 minutes 00 seconds north latitude and south of 29 degrees 51 minutes 00 seconds north latitude from 89 degrees 15 minutes 00 seconds west longitude westward to 89 degrees 22 minutes 00 seconds west longitude. 
All Louisiana commercial fishing closures as detailed on the commercial fishing maps posted to the LDWF website remain unchanged.

For more information contact Marianne Burke, 225-765-2917 or mburke@wlf.la.gov

For more information related to the oil spill, visit http://www.emergency.louisiana.gov. Connect with us on Facebook athttp://www.facebook.com/GOHSEP and on Twitter as @GOHSEP. View photos from the state's response efforts athttp://www.flickr.com/photos/lagohsep.

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L.D.W.F. Reopens All State Waters to Recreational Angling

Release Date: 08/20/2010

Today, the Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries Commission ordered an immediate opening of all state inshore and offshore territorial waters to recreational angling, including charter boat angling.  The areas opened today by the commission do not include the recreational harvest of shrimp, crabs or oysters.  Prior to today?s action, approximately 862 square miles or 11 percent of saltwater areas of the state remained closed to all recreational fishing due to the impacts from the Deepwater Horizon oil spill. 

LDWF, in coordination with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, is continuing to provide additional fish tissue samples for sensory testing and chemical analysis in preparation for re-opening areas currently closed to commercial crabbing and commercial fishing.

With today?s action, the Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries Commission also voted to submit a letter, urging the FDA and NOAA to expedite the required testing to re-open commercial fishing areas previously closed due to confirmed reports of oil.

LDWF guidelines for re-opening commercial fishing areas are as follows:

Once visible signs of oil are no longer apparent in areas that were previously closed by LDWF to commercial fishing, LDWF will then submit an ?intent to reopen? to NOAA and the FDA

LDWF biologists will conduct thorough sampling of finfish, crabs and shrimp in the proposed reopening area

Following the collection of the samples, biologists will immediately transfer specimens to be tested by the FDA and NOAA for signs of chemical contamination.  This process is expected to take between seven and ten days

After complete analysis the FDA and NOAA will render an opinion regarding proposed reopening

For a map detailing today?s recreational openings click here. 

For more information, contact Laura Deslatte at ldeslatte@wlf.la.gov or 225-765-2335

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LDWF Announces the Opening of Commercial Crab Fishing in Significant Areas West of the Mississippi River

Release Date: 08/20/2010

 

Today, the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries, in coordination with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, ordered an emergency reopening of commercial crabbing in areas west of Southwest Pass of the Mississippi River that were previously closed because of the Deepwater Horizon oil spill.

Effective immediately today, August 20, all state inside and outside territorial waters west of Southwest Pass of the Mississippi River and 89 degrees 25 minutes 00 seconds west longitude are open to the commercial harvest of crabs.

LDWF Secretary Robert Barham ordered these reopenings following the completion of comprehensive testing by the FDA. The FDA advised that, following extensive sensory testing and analytical chemistry results, the crab samples tested from previously closed areas are safe for consumption.

The following areas remain closed to all commercial fishing, including commercial crabbing, until further notice:

All Louisiana commercial fishing closures including commercial crab closures east of Southwest Pass of the Mississippi River remain unchanged. LDWF does anticipate FDA approval to reopen commercial crabbing in this area within days.

The portion of state inside waters north of 29 degrees 23 minutes 00 seconds north latitude and south of 29 degrees 30 minutes 00 seconds north latitude from 89 degrees 50 minutes 00 seconds west longitude westward to the eastern shore of the Barataria Waterway, and

The portion of state inside and outside waters north of 29 degrees 18 minutes 00 seconds north latitude and south of 29 degrees 22 minutes 00 seconds north latitude from 89 degrees 48 minutes 00 seconds west longitude westward to 89 degrees 52 minutes 00 seconds west longitude, and

The portion of state inside and outside waters bounded by the following coordinates:

29 degrees 18 minutes 00 seconds north latitude
89 degrees 48 minutes 00 seconds west longitude 
29 degrees 20 minutes 00 seconds north latitude
89 degrees 48 minutes 00 seconds west longitude 
29 degrees 13 minutes 40 seconds north latitude
89 degrees 33 minutes 00 seconds west longitude 
29 degrees 15 minutes 00 seconds north latitude
89 degrees 32 minutes 30 seconds west longitude 
The portion of state inside and outside waters bounded by the following coordinates:

29 degrees 18 minutes 00 seconds north latitude
89 degrees 52 minutes 00 seconds west longitude 
29 degrees 21 minutes 00 seconds north latitude
89 degrees 52 minutes 00 seconds west longitude 
29 degrees 15 minutes 40 seconds north latitude
89 degrees 56 minutes 00 seconds west longitude 
29 degrees 17 minutes 10 seconds north latitude
89 degrees 57 minutes 30 seconds west longitude 
The portion of state inside and outside waters north of 29 degrees 08 minutes 15 seconds north latitude and south of 29 degrees 11 minutes 40 seconds north latitude from 90 degrees 03 minutes 00 seconds west longitude westward to 90 degrees 07 minutes 00 seconds west longitude, and

The portion of state inside waters north of 29 degrees 09 minutes 00 seconds north latitude and south of 29 degrees 12 minutes 50 seconds north latitude from the western shore of Bayou Lafourche westward to 90 degrees 17 minutes 50 seconds west longitude, and

The portion of state inside and outside waters north of 29 degrees 03 minutes 00 seconds north latitude and south of 29 degrees 09 minutes 00 seconds north latitude from 90 degrees 13 minutes 30 seconds west longitude and the western shore of Bayou Lafourche westward to 90 degrees 34 minutes 00 seconds west longitude, and

The portion of state inside and outside waters north of 29 degrees 02 minutes 00 seconds north latitude and south of 29 degrees 05 minutes 00 seconds north latitude from 90 degrees 37 minutes 00 seconds west longitude westward to 90 degrees 58 minutes 00 seconds west longitude

For maps detailing these commercial openings, click here
For detail sheet one, click here
For detail sheet two, click here
For detail sheet three, click here
For more information related to the oil spill, visit http://www.emergency.louisiana.gov. Connect with us on Facebook athttp://www.facebook.com/GOHSEP and on Twitter as @GOHSEP. View photos from the state's response efforts athttp://www.flickr.com/photos/lagohsep.

For more information contact Marianne Burke at mburke@wlf.la.gov or 225-765-2917.

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