LDWF News Release

L.O.W.A. Honors Young Outdoor Writers, Photographers

Release Date: 08/30/2013

Clay Kershaw, Kenny Odinet III and Story Moller were big winners in the Louisiana Outdoor Writers Association’s 2013 Youth Journalism Contest celebrated Aug. 10 during LOWA’s annual awards banquet in Lafayette.
Kershaw, a 13-year-old Catholic High-Baton Rouge student, earned first and second places in the Photography Division for his images of alligators in a south Louisiana swamp and a snowy egret perched on a cypress stump.
Odinet, a home-school with his three siblings in Lafayette, took first in Junior Essay (ages 7-13) for this story entitled “Trout on Soft Plastics,” in which he described his first speckled trout catch on an artificial lure.
Moller, 17, attends Cedar Creek School near his Ruston home and took first and third places in Senior Essay (ages 14-18). His winning entry, “Frosty Morning,” documented his first-ever flooded-tree duck hunt, while his third-place story entitled “Gift of a King” recounted memorable family elk hunts in Montana.
Ava Lemoine, an 8-year-old St. Aloysius Elementary student from Baton Rouge, placed this in photography with an image of the Louisiana at sunset.  Kershaw’s younger brother, Alex, 11, attends Parkview Baptist School, placed fourth in Photography for his shot of a lizard on the hunt.
The D’Arensbourg sisters, 13-year-old Kyla and 10-year-old Janae placed second and third, respectively, in Junior Essay. They recounted summer trips to the Louisiana coast, Kyla’s “Fishing on the Pier” and Janae’s “Crabbing on Grand Isle” brought awards to their home in Zachary. Kyla attends Zachary High. Janae is a Copper Mill Elementary student.
Frances Purgerson, a 9-year-old Our Lady of Mercy student, was fourth in Junior Essay for her story about how close she became to a family of chimney swifts living in her backyard.
Averi Young, 16 and a student at West Feliciana High, placed second in Senior Essay for her story, “A Sleepless Night; A Memorable Morning,” about her first-ever squirrel hunt with a dog.
There was a tie for Senior Essay’s fourth place. It was shared by 14-year-old Jesuit High student Jacob DeRamus from River Ridge and recent Baton Rouge High grad Jade Spears, 18. DeRamus recounted this year’s Mardi Gras Day when he and a fishing buddy went bass fishing in New Orleans’ City Park and witness the catch of a park-record largemouth in “Catch Me Something, Mister!”.
Spears’ entry, “The Eagle,” told of her several years trips to Old River in Pointe Coupee Parish on fishing trips with her father and her deepening relationship with a family of bald eagles living along that oxbow.
To view the winning photos and read the winning essays, go to http://www.wlf.louisiana.gov/hunting/lowa-outdoor-journalism-contest .
The Louisiana chapter of Safari Club International sponsors the Youth Journalism Contest.  For more information on the contest, contact Joe Macaluso at 225-388-0293 or jmacaluso@theadvocate.com .



Old Highway 11 on Pearl River WMA to Reopen Aug. 31

Release Date: 08/30/2013

Aug. 30, 2013 – Old Highway 11 on Pearl River Wildlife Management Area in southeastern St. Tammany Parish will reopen at 6:30 a.m. on Saturday, Aug. 31.
The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) had closed the road Aug. 22 for repairs. Repairs to the road have been completed by the Louisiana Department of Transportation and Development. 
For more information, please contact Christian Winslow at 985-543-4777 or cwinslow@wlf.la.gov.



Rockefeller State Wildlife Refuge Public Access to Be Temporarily Restricted Beginning Sept. 4

Release Date: 08/29/2013

Aug. 29, 2013 -- Rockefeller State Wildlife Refuge will begin the annual nuisance alligator harvest on Wednesday, Sept. 4. During this period, the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) will not open the refuge to the public each day until 10 a.m.
Due to construction projects in progress, the public is advised that entry sign instructions must be followed even when refuge gates are open.  Failure to follow refuge closure instructions may result in enforcement citations.
After 10 a.m., the public will be allowed to enter the refuge and utilize recreational areas until official sunset each day. The delayed openings will be in effect for seven days or until all alligator trappers have utilized their tags for this controlled harvest. The public is also advised not to tamper with lines left in place by alligator trappers.
The refuge, spanning 26 miles of coastal Louisiana in Cameron and Vermilion parishes, provides recreational opportunities to fishermen seeking shrimp, redfish, speckled trout, black drum, and largemouth bass, among others.
Rockefeller SWR is one of the most biologically diverse wildlife areas in the nation and attracts over 100,000 visitors annually. Located at the terminus of the vast Mississippi Flyway, south Louisiana winters about four million waterfowl annually. The refuge provides high quality wetlands habitat for ducks, geese, shorebirds and wading birds.
For more information on Rockefeller State Wildlife Refuge, visit the LDWF website at www.wlf.la.gov or contact Phillip Trosclair at 337-491-2593.



Agenda for Commission Meeting

Release Date: 08/29/2013

The next regular Commission Meeting will be held at 9:30 AM on Thursday, September 5, 2013, at the Wildlife and Fisheries Headquarters Building located at 2000 Quail Drive, Baton Rouge, LA

The following items will be discussed:

1.  Roll Call

2.  Approval of Minutes of August 1, 2013

3.  Commission Special Announcements/Personal Privilege

4.  To Hear Enforcement & Aviation Reports/August

5.  To Hear an Update on the 2013 Recreational Red Snapper Season

6.  To Consider a Notice of Intent for the Abandoned Crab Traps Removal Program        

7. To Consider a Notice of Intent to Repeal the Scuba Diving Game Fish Season on Toledo Bend

8.  To Consider a Notice of Intent to Remove the Special Permit for Commercial Fish Seining on Old River Lake, Concordia Parish

9.  To Consider a Notice of Intent to Remove the Special Permit for Commercial Fish Seining on Lake Louis, Catahoula Parish

10. To Consider a Notice of Intent to Remove the Special Permit for Commercial Fishing on Lake Bruin, Tensas Parish

11.  To Consider a Notice of Intent to modify Rules for the Domesticated Aquatic Organism License

12.  To Consider a Notice of Intent to Remove the Special Permit for the Harvest of Shad and Skipjack with Experimental Seine and Remove the Experimental Dip Net Permit

13.  To Hear a Presentation on Archery in Louisiana Schools (ALAS) Program

14.  Set January 2014 Meeting Date

15. Receive Public Comments

16. Adjournment



Drawdown Scheduled for Chicot Lake

Release Date: 08/28/2013

(Aug. 28, 2013) – The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries has scheduled a drawdown for Chicot Lake, just north of Ville Platte, to begin on Tuesday, September 3 to control nuisance aquatic vegetation. 

The water level will be lowered 3 feet from pool stage. Water fluctuations are proven to yield significant beneficial effects for fisheries and aquatic vegetation control, particularly on Chicot Lake.

The drawdown is part of an integrated lake management plan, which utilizes several different control methods to control overabundant nuisance vegetation.  The Department stocked triploid grass carp during the winter of 2012 and will continue herbicide applications.

Although the lake will not be closed to fishing, caution is advised of boaters during the low water period, as boat lanes will not provide normal clearance for underwater obstructions.

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.



Three Men Cited For Illegal Oyster Activity in Plaquemines Parish

Release Date: 08/27/2013

Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) Enforcement Division agents cited three men for alleged oyster and boating safety violations in Bayou Stephan in Plaquemines Parish on Aug. 26.

Agents cited John Phillipe, 32, Patrick Sylve, 25, both of Port Sulphur, and Jean Taylor, 32, of Sparta, Tenn., for harvesting oysters during illegal hours, unlawfully removing oysters from a private lease, failing to have written permission, and violation of the emergency fishery closure still in effect from the BP oil spill.

Phillipe, the licensed captain, was also cited for twice violating the state’s health code for not filling out his Department of Health and Hospitals log book and vessel sanitation requirements.  He was also cited for taking commercial fish without a vessel license, no visible boat numbers, improper running lights, failing to comply with personal flotation device requirements, failing to change ownership of vessel after 45 days and failing to display a valid certificate decal.

The incident occurred when agents witnessed Phillipe and his deckhands harvesting oysters from a lease near Port Sulphur that did not belong to them and under the cover of darkness after legal sunset.  The boating safety and health code violations were discovered during the stop.

Unlawfully harvesting oysters from a private lease, without written permission from the lease holder, and during illegal hours each carries up to a $950 fine and up to 120 days in jail for each offense.  Taking commercial fish without a vessel license brings up to a $500 fine and up to 90 days in jail.  Each count of the state’s health code violations carries a $25 fine and up to 10 days in jail and forfeiture of the product.  Each of the boating safety violations brings a $50 fine and up to 15 days in jail.

Agents issued 20 citations, seized one oyster dredge and 11 sacks of oysters were returned to the water.

Agents participating in the case were Sgt. Adam Young and Senior Agent Villere Reggio.

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

2013 Alligator Hunting Season Set to Open Aug. 28

Release Date: 08/27/2013

Aug. 27, 2013 -- The East Zone Louisiana alligator season is scheduled to open Wednesday, Aug. 28, followed by the West Zone opening on Sept. 4.

The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) will be issuing tags to licensed hunters through Sept. 4. Over 38,000 tags will be issued and an estimated 34,000 alligators will be harvested during the 2013 season.

Harvested alligators will range from 4 to 12 feet in length with the average size estimated to be 7 feet, 6 inches.

According to LDWF Alligator Program Manager Noel Kinler, “There is good demand for alligator skins and meat, and we expect to see a good harvest season with prices at least equal to last year’s average of $23.50 per foot. We will issue an estimated 3,000 licenses to Louisiana residents and over 500 to non-resident sport hunters.”

Like other outdoor activities, youngsters participate at a very early age since alligator hunting is often a family affair and women also participate as hunters during the alligator season.  Lifelong hunters still enjoy the challenge into their 70s and 80s, and alligator hunting leases are passed down from father to son to grandson.

For more information, contact Noel Kinler at 337-373-0032 or nkinler@wlf.la.gov or Lance Campbell at 337-373-0032 or ljcampbell@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.



Agents Arrest Man for Possession of Stolen Crab Traps in Cameron Parish

Release Date: 08/26/2013

Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) Enforcement Division agents arrested a DeRidder man on Aug. 23 for alleged crabbing and fishing violations on Calcasieu Lake.

Agents arrested Robby Joe Wiley, 38, for illegal possession of stolen things, taking commercial fish without a commercial gear license, taking or possessing commercial fish without a vessel license, using crab traps without required markings, violating crab trap escape ring requirements, taking commercial fish without a commercial license and improper boat numbers.  Wiley was booked into the Cameron Parish Jail.

Agents received a complaint from a fisherman who reported he had crab traps stolen from him.  Agents discovered that several crab traps in Calcasieu Lake were tagged with two commercial fishing numbers.  One of the numbers belonged to the victim and another belonged to Wiley.  Wiley replaced the victim’s lines and corks attached to the crab traps with his own.

On Aug. 23, Agents went back to the area and checked all the crab traps in the area with Wiley’s corks.  Agents then seized crab traps tagged with the two commercial fishermen numbers on them.

While Agents were conducting the investigation, they were met by Wiley.  Wiley identified the seized crab traps as his own.  Agents did a compliance check and discovered that Wiley was commercial fishing under another person’s commercial fishing license and possessed no commercial licenses of his own.  Agents also discovered several traps were not tagged and crab traps that did not have escape rings.

Agents seized 46 crab traps, Wiley’s boat, motor and trailer along with the fraudulent commercial licenses.

Possession of stolen thing things brings up to a $1,000 fine and up to six months in jail.  Using crab traps without the required markings and violating crap trap escape ring requirements each carries up to a $950 fine and up to 120 days in jail for each offense.  Taking commercial fish without a commercial gear license, without a vessel license, or without a commercial license each carries up to a $500 fine and up to 90 days in jail for each offense.  Improper boat numbers brings a $50 fine and up to 15 days in jail.

Agents participating in the case are Lt. Beau Robertson, Sgt. Stuart Guillory, Sgt. Justin Sonnier, Senior Agent Anthony Verret and Senior Agent Sean Moreau.

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

2013-14 Migratory Game Bird Regulations Pamphlet Now Available on L.D.W.F.’s Website

Release Date: 08/26/2013

Aug. 26, 2013 -- The 2013-14 Migratory Game Bird Regulations pamphlet is now available on the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) Web site at http://www.wlf.louisiana.gov/hunting/regulations.

The pamphlet includes early hunting season dates for doves, gallinules, rails and teal in September, as well as the November opening dates for ducks, coots, geese and mergansers, and woodcock in December.

Dates are provided per zone, where applicable, and youth hunting dates are also listed.

Correction / clarifications:

A) Office locations and phone numbers for US Fish and Wildlife Service special agents are incorrectly listed in the printed pamphlet. Corrected listings, which do appear within the pamphlet posted on the LDWF website, include the following three USFWS offices:

Lacombe (985) 882-3756

Lafayette (337) 291-3114

Metairie (504) 219-8870

B) The LDWF press release of Aug. 1, that announced the youth hunt dates for migratory waterfowl season in the West Zone, contained an incorrect January date. The correct date for the second Saturday for youth-only waterfowl hunting in the West Zone is Jan. 25. That date is correctly noted in the printed and LDWF web-posted 2013-14 Migratory Game Bird Regulations pamphlet.

Printed copies of the 2013-14 Migratory Game Bird Regulations pamphlet will be available at license vendor outlets and LDWF Wildlife Division field offices by mid-September.

For more information, contact Bo Boehringer at 225-765-5115 or bboehringer@wlf.la.gov .



Crab Task Force to Meet August 29 in New Orleans

Release Date: 08/23/2013


The following is the agenda for the Crab Task Force Meeting. The Public is invited to attend.

Thursday, August 29, 1:30 p.m.

UNO Advanced Technology Center

2021 Lakeshore Drive, Suite 210

New Orleans, Louisiana 70122



I.   Roll Call and introduction of guests
II.  Approval of meeting Agenda and July 11,2013 minutes
III. Financial Report- Rene LeBreton
            A. MSC payment update

IV. Old Business
            A. Serviceable Crab Trap Law
            B. Derelict Crab Trap Pilot Program

V. New Business
            A. MSC marketing- Kristin McLaren (LSPMB)
            B. Soft Shell Crab Shedding Grant
            C. 2014 Derelict Crab Trap Clean-up
            D. Hard and Soft Crab Landings-LDWF Rep
            E. Lake Pontchartrain Basin- Keith Watts

VI.  Public Comment
VII. Set Next Meeting
VIII. Adjourn


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