LDWF News

LDWF News Release

LWF Commission Modifies Rules for Recreational Gag and Black Grouper Harvest

Release Date: 05/05/2016

Today, the Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries Commission took action on a Notice of Intent to modify regulations for the recreational gag grouper season and gag and black grouper minimum size limits.  The Commission also took action on a Declaration of Emergency to make those season and size limits effective immediately, allowing anglers to take advantage of the earlier season opening while rules are promulgated.
 
The recreational season for gag grouper in Louisiana waters will now open on June 1, 2016, and remain open through December 31, 2016.  The recreational size limit for both gag and black grouper will increase from 22 to 24 inches total length.
 
NOAA Fisheries promulgated rules establishing this season extension and recreational size limit increase in federal waters off Louisiana.  Today’s action will establish state rules consistent with federal regulations.
 
To view the full notice of intent, please visit here.
 
Interested persons may submit comments relative to the proposed rule to Jason Adriance, Fisheries Division, Department of Wildlife and Fisheries, P.O. Box 98000, Baton Rouge, LA 70898-9000 or via email to jadriance@wlf.la.gov prior to August 4, 2016.

 

LWF Commission Modifies Rules for Black Bass on Sabine River

Release Date: 05/05/2016

Today, the Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries Commission considered a Notice of Intent to modify the size limit on black bass on the Lower Sabine River.
 
The NOI proposes a decrease in the minimum length limit (MLL) of black bass from 14 inches to 12 inches on the main stem of the Sabine River from the Toledo Bend Reservoir Dam downstream to the Interstate 10 Bridge. If approved, these changes will go into effect on September 1, 2016. The daily bag limit on black bass will remain at eight fish.  
 
In 2011, Louisiana and Texas entered into an agreement to adopt consistent recreational fishing regulations governing their bordering waters. This modification will maintain consistency with a recent regulation change made by Texas Parks and Wildlife.
 
To view the full notice of intent, please visit here.
 
Interested persons may submit comments relative to the proposed rule to Bobby Reed, Fisheries Division, Department of Wildlife and Fisheries, 1213 North Lakeshore Drive, Lake Charles, LA 70601 or via email to breed@wlf.la.gov prior to July 5, 2016.

 

 

LDWF Closes South Side of Price Lake Road on Rockefeller Wildlife Refuge Due to Flooding

Release Date: 05/05/2016

May 5, 2016 - The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries has closed the south side of Price Lake Road on Rockefeller Wildlife Refuge in Grand Chenier due to flooding. The road closure begins south of the bird observation platform.
 
Once the water recedes, the roads will be inspected, repaired then reopened, which is expected to be between 2-3 weeks.
 
The north side of Price Lake Road remains open. Visitors to the refuge are cautioned to stay away from any high water on the road.
 
Other areas available for public access include the Joseph Harbor Canal and East End Locks Road, both located about three miles east of the refuge headquarters building.
 
Rockefeller Wildlife Refuge, which consists of 76,042 acres, is located in eastern Cameron and western Vermilion parishes. It borders the Gulf of Mexico for 26.5 miles and extends inland toward the Grand Chenier ridge, a stranded beach ridge, six miles from the Gulf. For more information on the refuge, go to ttp://www.wlf.louisiana.gov/refuge/rockefeller-wildlife-refuge.
 
For more information, contact Gabe Giffin at 337-491-2000 or ggiffin@wlf.la.gov.

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LDWF Announces Bid Process For Alligator Hunting on WMAs, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Properties and Refuges for the 2016-2018 Alligator Harvest Seasons

Release Date: 05/05/2016

May 5, 2016 - The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) is accepting bids for alligator hunting on Wildlife Management Areas (WMAs), U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) properties and state wildlife refuges for the 2016-2018 alligator harvest seasons through June 15.
 
Eligible alligator hunters are chosen through a bid system every three years on selected WMAs/USACE/refuges properties.
 
Bids for alligator hunting will be solicited for the following WMAs/USACE/refuge properties: Grassy Lake, Spring Bayou, and Pomme de Terre (Avoyelles Parish), Attakapas (Iberia, St. Martin and St. Mary parishes), Sherburne - USACE lands (Iberville, Pointe Coupee and St. Martin parishes), Dewey W. Wills (La Salle and Catahoula parishes), Manchac (St. John Parish), Pearl River - North of Interstate 10,  Pearl River - Between Interstate 10 and U.S. Hwy 90 and Pearl River - South of U.S. Hwy 90 (St. Tammany Parish), Joyce (Tangipahoa Parish), Maurepas Swamp (St. John, St. James, Ascension, Livingston and Tangipahoa parishes), Indian Bayou - USACE property (St. Landry and St. Martin parishes), Atchafalaya Delta (St. Mary Parish), Pointe-aux-Chenes (Lafourche and Terrebonne parishes), Salvador (St. Charles Parish), Pass-a-Loutre (Plaquemines Parish) and St. Tammany Refuge (St. Tammany Parish).
 
A total of 30 alligator hunting opportunities are available for bid on one refuge, 13 WMAs and two USACE properties. The number of alligator tags that will be issued to successful bidders in 2016 will range from 10-90 tags depending on the area awarded.  For specific details on the number of alligator hunter opportunities and tags available by area, please see the public notice or bid application notification. 
 
Interested participants may review and print out the public notice and bid application notifications and forms from LDWF’s website at www.wlf.louisiana.gov/wildlife/alligator-hunting or request by phone at the phone numbers below or request in writing from Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries, 2016-2018 WMA Alligator Harvest Bids, P.O. Box 98000, Baton Rouge, La. 70898-9000.
 
For more information, please call the appropriate LDWF office (Hammond 985-543-4777, Opelousas 337-948-0255, New Iberia 337-373-0032, New Orleans 504-284-5264) or send e-mail to LAalligatorprogram@wlf.la.gov.
 
NO guiding/outfitting activities for sport alligator hunting will be allowed while conducting alligator harvest activities on WMAs/USACE/refuge properties.  Selected hunters will not be allowed to participate in any television or reality show production.  Any video activity must be specifically approved by the alligator program manager.
 
An individual can apply and bid on more than one WMA/USACE/refuge property but will only be selected for one WMA/USACE/refuge property.  Bidders applying for more than one area must fill out individual applications for each WMA/USACE/refuge property. Only one winner allowed per household.
 
Applicants must meet the following criteria in order to submit a bid:
1)    Must be a Louisiana resident at least 18 years of age.
2)    Must have previous alligator hunting experience in Louisiana.
3)    Must be able to provide essential equipment for alligator hunting on the WMA/USACE property/refuge on which they are bidding.
4)    Must be able to report to the WMA/USACE property/refuge each morning until alligator tag quota is completed.
5)    Must follow specific instructions issued by LDWF personnel.
6)    Must maintain required records.
7)    Must be able to successfully pass a criminal background check. All applicants will be screened for past wildlife and criminal violations. Applicants with felony convictions or with Class Two or above wildlife convictions, WMA/USACE/refuge violations or littering within the last five years, as determined by the LDWF enforcement division, shall be disqualified.
 
Completed bid application forms must be received by 10 a.m. on June 15, 2016 in Room 241 of the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries Headquarters Building at 2000 Quail Drive, Baton Rouge, La. 70898.
 
Bid opening will be held at the LDWF headquarters building, second floor conference room, 2000 Quail Drive, Baton Rouge, LA 70898.  Winning bidders will be notified of selection by phone and are required to come in and sign a contract at a later date. LDWF reserves the right to reject any and all bids.
 
For more information, contact Jeb Linscombe at 337-373-0032 or jlinscombe@wlf.la.gov.

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Lake Providence Watershed Council Offers Solutions, Steps to Improving Water Body Quality in Report

Release Date: 05/05/2016

An overhead look at Lake Providence

May 5, 2016 – Lake Providence, located in northeast Louisiana in East Carroll Parish, is a favorite outdoor recreational playground for many residents of the surrounding area.
 
From boating to fishing to simply enjoying a day at the lake, the oxbow waterway formerly linked to the Mississippi River is another reason why Louisiana is called the Sportsman’s Paradise.
 
The Lake Providence Watershed Council (LPWC), formed by Louisiana
Senate concurrent resolution 115 of the 2015 legislative regular session, has been charged with preserving and making it even better. The LPWC has taken the first step, issuing a plan of action for watershed management to improve and enhance the quality of the Lake Providence (Click here to view the full report).
 
The council released its initial report to the Louisiana House Committee on Natural Resources and the Louisiana Senate Committee on Environmental Quality on Friday (April 29). The council said revitalization of the lake, “can be accomplished through engineering, education, enticement and enforcement of existing and new regulations focused on best management practices.’’
 
“Louisiana is blessed to have so many talented individuals who can collaboratively work and create a detailed plan to address complicated issues,’’ said Louisiana State Senator Francis Thompson of Delhi, a member of the council and who represents East Carroll Parish. “That was certainly the case here. The work accomplished by the council was done with an eye to making sure Lake Providence thrives in the generations to come. We’re addressing the water quality concerns.’’
 
The LPWC presented several management strategy recommendations in the report to upgrade the quality of the lake. It seeks to improve the fisheries, turbidity and lake level management among other enhancements.
 
Local stakeholders as well as several local, state and federal agencies contributed to the report.
 
“The key is to engage all stakeholders who want to see the quality of our lake improve,’’ said Andy Anders, a member of the council and the Louisiana House of Representatives, from District 21. “That starts at the local level. But we also want to use the ideas from the federal and state level as well. This particular partnership has allowed us to bring the best ideas and practices into a solid plan of action.’’
 
The report sought to identify impacts to water quality, excess nutrient and sediment run-off, shoreline modification management, watershed conservation measures and habitat restoration. The council also stressed the importance of coordination of federal, state and local entities for optimal management and protection of the natural resources.
 
It also offered changes for management and protection of the Lake Providence watershed to make it more efficient and sustainable.
 
One key element is to improve the lake’s water quality which will result in stimulating submerged aquatic vegetation growth. That would help to improve not only fisheries habitat but also the overall health of the lake.
 
Managing the water level is also important, the council concluded. It recommended that Baxter Bayou and Tensas Bayou structures, which were installed to regulate flow out of the lake, be rehabilitated or replaced and regular maintenance to Tensas Bayou be made a priority.
 
Education is stressed in the council’s report. The council plans on having several informational meetings to address concerns, explain the report along with the prescribed solutions as well as get feedback on the report.

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Tram Trail at Tunica Hills Wildlife Management Area Closed for Repairs

Release Date: 05/04/2016

May 4, 2016 – The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) has closed Tram Trail, a year-round ATV trail, at Tunica Hills Wildlife Management Area (WMA) for repairs. The trail is located on the south tract of Tunica Hills WMA.
 
Once repairs are completed and deemed safe for public use, the trail will be reopened.
 
Tunica Hills WMA, which consists of 5,906 acres, is located approximately 20 miles northwest of St. Francisville in West Feliciana Parish. For more information on the WMA, go to: http://www.wlf.louisiana.gov/wma/2752.
 
For more information on the WMA, contact Forest Burks at fburks@wlf.la.gov or 985-543-4781.

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Boyce Tower Road at Maurepas Swamp Wildlife Management Area Closed Due to Flooding

Release Date: 05/04/2016

May 4, 2016 – The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries has closed Boyce Tower Road within Maurepas Swamp Wildlife Management Area due to flooding from heavy rain.
 
Once flood waters recede, damage will be assessed to determine repairs needed before the road can be reopened for safe travel.
 
Maurepas Swamp WMA, which consists of 122,098 acres, is located approximately 25 miles west of New Orleans and along the south shore of Lake Maurepas west to near Sorrento. The WMA includes property in Ascension, Livingston, St. John the Baptist, St. James and Tangipahoa parishes. For more information on the WMA, go to: http://www.wlf.louisiana.gov/wma/2791.

For more information on this WMA, contact Forest Burks at fburks@wlf.la.gov or 985-543-4781.

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Drawdown for Aquatic Vegetation Control on Iatt Lake

Release Date: 05/03/2016

The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries will initiate a drawdown for vegetation control in Iatt Lake in Grant Parish on May 16, 2016.
 
The lake level will be lowered 8 feet below pool stage to allow drying of the lake bottom, concentrating aquatic vegetation and increasing the effectiveness of herbicide applications.
 
The control structure will be closed no later than the first week of October 2016 to allow the lake to refill.
 
The drawdown is a component of LDWF’s integrated management plan for control of aquatic vegetation in Iatt Lake. Herbicide applications will also be conducted during the drawdown in accessible areas. In addition, 49,000 triploid grass carp were stocked into the lake in the fall of 2015 to control submerged nuisance vegetation.   
 
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.
 
For additional information regarding the drawdown, contact Ricky Moses, LDWF Biologist Manager, at rmoses@wlf.la.gov or (318) 487-5888.  

Agency Partnership to Expedite Boat Registrations

Release Date: 05/03/2016

News Release

For Immediate Release
May 3, 2016

Contact: Rene LeBreton
Public Information - LDWF
(504) 286-8745
rlebreton@wlf.la.gov

Contact: Kizzy Payton
Press Secretary - LDR
225-219-2718
Kizzy.Payton@la.gov

Agency Partnership to Expedite Boat Registrations

(Baton Rouge, LA) – The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) and the Louisiana Department of Revenue (LDR) have announced a partnership to help expedite the process of registering boats.

The Louisiana Department of Revenue will have a representative at the LDWF headquarters office in Baton Rouge, LA every Monday to help process tax payments for customers registering boats.  In some instances, when customers register a boat purchased from an individual, they are required to pay the taxes on that boat at LDR prior to registering the vessel at LDWF.  This partnership will prevent many customers from visiting both agencies; both transactions can be accomplished at one location.

“We look forward to this partnership with the Department of Revenue, and we will continue to identify opportunities to provide the highest level of customer service for our citizens,” said LDWF Secretary Charlie Melancon.

“The partnership with the Department of Wildlife and Fisheries represents a great opportunity to collaborate with other state agencies and provide the services needed for Louisiana taxpayers,” said LDR Secretary Kimberly Lewis Robinson. “We look forward to working with them to help expedite this process through this added convenience.”

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.
 

Wham Brake in Russell Sage Wildlife Management Area Reopened by Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries

Release Date: 05/03/2016

May 3, 2016 – Wham Brake, located in the Russell Sage Wildlife Management Area (WMA), has been reopened by the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries. However, the remainder of Russell Sage WMA is closed due to flooding.
 
Russell Sage WMA is located in Morehouse, Ouachita, Richland, and Caldwell parishes and is approximately seven miles east of Monroe and ten miles west of Rayville.
 
For information on this WMA, go to http://www.wlf.louisiana.gov/wma/2777 or contact Lowrey Moak at 318-343-4044 or lmoak@wlf.la.gov.
 

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