LDWF News Release

LDWF to Hold Lake Bistineau Public Meeting

Release Date: 08/09/2016

The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries will conduct an informational meeting concerning Lake Bistineau.
Who:  LDWF Inland Fisheries Staff
What:  Public information meeting on Lake Bistineau
When:  Tuesday, August 23, 2016, at 6:30 p.m.
Where:    Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries Region 1 Office
                Jonathan Glasscock Memorial Classroom
                9961 Hwy. 80
                Minden, LA 71055
The meeting will include an update on the current status of the lake, and LDWF staff will field questions concerning the management of the lake and giant salvinia.  Everyone interested in Lake Bistineau is encouraged to attend. 
Space is limited to 100 individuals, so please keep this in mind when making plans to attend.  
The current LDWF Lake Bistineau Management Plan can be viewed at: http://www.wlf.louisiana.gov/fishing/waterbody-management-plans-inland
For additional information regarding the meetings, contact Jeff Sibley, LDWF Biologist Manager, at jsibley@wlf.la.gov or (318) 371-3066.

LDWF to Hold Public Hearings on Proposed Cervid Carcass Importation Ban

Release Date: 08/09/2016

Aug. 9, 2016 – The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) will conduct six public hearings beginning Aug. 22 to discuss a proposed cervid carcass importation. The ban was proposed to assist in preventing the introduction of chronic wasting disease (CWD) into Louisiana’s white-tailed deer population.
Meetings include:
Aug. 22 at St. Tammany Parish Council Chambers, 21490 Koop Dr., Mandeville, 7 p.m.,
Aug. 22 at Lake Charles’ LSU Ag Center, 7101 Gulf Hwy., Lake Charles, 6:30 p.m.,
Aug. 23 at LDWF Monroe Field Office, 368 Century Link Dr., Monroe, 6:30 p.m.,
Aug. 23 at USGS National Wetlands Research Center, 700 Cajundome Blvd., Lafayette, 6:30 p.m.,
Aug. 24 at LDWF Minden Field Office, 9961 Hwy. 80, Minden, 6:30 p.m.,
Aug. 25 at Woodworth Outdoor Education Center, 661 Robinson Bridge Road, Woodworth, 6:30 p.m.
An importation ban on carcasses of cervids harvested out-of-state was proposed by LDWF during the July LWFC meeting and is in the public comment period. The ban defines a cervid as animals of the family Cervidae, including but not limited to white-tailed deer, mule deer, elk, moose, caribou, fallow deer, axis deer, sika deer, red deer and reindeer. 
The proposed ban would prohibit the importation of cervid carcasses except for deboned meat, antlers, clean skull plates with antlers, cleaned skulls without tissue attached, capes, tanned hides, finished taxidermy mounts and cleaned cervid teeth.
This proposed ban is strictly for the purpose of reducing the likelihood that CWD will enter Louisiana through carcass importation. Approved parts and deboned meat from other states must contain a possession tag with the hunter’s name, out-of-state license number (if required), address, species, date and location (county and state) of harvest.  Each state has different possession requirements for game once processed.

To view the full notice of intent, please visit http://www.wlf.louisiana.gov/action-items.
Public comment can be submitted in writing by mail to: Johnathan Bordelon, LDWF Wildlife Division, P.O. Box 98000, Baton Rouge, LA 70898-9000, or via email to jbordelon@wlf.la.gov until 4:30 p.m. on Aug. 26, 2016.
For more information, contact Bordelon at 225-765-2344.


Four Men Cited for Illegal Shrimping in Plaquemines Parish

Release Date: 08/08/2016

Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) enforcement agents cited multiple boats for alleged shrimping violations on Aug. 6 in Plaquemines Parish.

Agents cited Billy Pansy, 51, of Port Sulphur, and John F. Parker, 50, of Boothville, for using skimmers in a closed season.  Agents seized and sold 655 pounds of shrimp from this vessel.

Agents also cited Don A. Barthelemy, 53, of Harvey, and Rodney S. Andry, 33, of Buras, for using skimmers in a closed season.  Agents seized and sold 630 pounds of shrimp from this vessel.

The agents were on patrol after receiving complaints of illegal shrimping taking place in the Buras area.

Using skimmers in a closed season carries up to a $950 fine and 120 days in jail plus forfeiture of anything seized.

In addition for the first conviction of shrimping during the closed season, the court may revoke or suspend the violator's trawl, skimmer, or butterfly gear licenses for one year from the date of the conviction.  During such revocation or suspension, the violators may be present on a vessel harvesting or possessing shrimp or possessing a trawl, skimmer, or butterfly net only if the vessel is equipped with and employs an operating vessel monitoring system which is accessible to LDWF.  The violators may also have to perform 40 hours of community service.

Agents involved in the case are Senior Agents Travis Bartlett and Blaine Wagner.

Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries Commission Recognizes National, World Archery Champions from Louisiana

Release Date: 08/08/2016

Benton Middle and Elementary archers were honored by the LWFC and LDWF Secretary Charlie Melancon.

Aug. 8, 2016 – The Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries Commission honored Louisiana archers who earned titles in this year’s National Archery in the Schools Program (NASP) World and National tournaments during Thursday’s monthly commission meeting in Baton Rouge.
The students are part of the Archery in Louisiana Schools Program (ALAS) administered by the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF). ALAS is part of NASP, which teaches international target archery to students in grades 4-12.
Benton Middle School was recognized for winning the NASP world and national championships as well as the 3-D world title. Benton Middle successfully defended its world championship.
Benton Elementary won the 3-D national championship and finished second in 3-D at the world tournament. Kingston Elementary was third in 3-D in the world tournament.
Madeline Lowry of Benton Elementary placed second in the elementary 3-D national tournament and Eden Old of Benton Elementary was third.
Emma Bunch of Benton Middle captured the world title in the 3-D middle school division and Kaitlyn Misenheimer was third. Aiden Haire of Benton Middle was third in the 3-D middle school division. And Kennedy Halsell of Kingston Elementary was fourth in the 3-D elementary division.
Louisiana, which sent 14 schools to the national championships, was one of 41 states and the District of Columbia to compete in the national championships. A total of 12,897 students competed in the national tournament, including 198 from Louisiana.
Three countries and 27 states participated in the world tournament, which included 4,135 competitors. Louisiana was represented by six schools and 103 students.
The ALAS/NASP program is available to all schools in Louisiana and grants are available to assist with funding. For more information regarding the ALAS program, please contact NASP State Coordinator Robert Stroede at rstroede@wlf.la.gov or 318-484-2276.


Fall Shrimp Season Opening Dates Announced

Release Date: 08/05/2016

For Immediate Release

(8-4-16) - The opening dates of the 2016 Louisiana fall shrimp season were announced at the August 4 meeting of the Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries Commission. The Commission set the dates based on information provided by Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries biologists and public comments.

The opening dates for the 2016 Louisiana fall shrimp season are as follows:

·      The portion of state inside waters from the Mississippi/Louisiana state line westward to the Atchafalaya River Ship Channel Buoy Line to open at 6 p.m. on Monday, August 15

·      The portion of state inside waters from the Atchafalaya River Ship Channel Buoy Line westward to the Louisiana/Texas state line to open at 6 a.m. on Monday, August 22

The Commission granted authority to the Secretary of the Department of Wildlife and Fisheries to delay these opening dates if biological and technical data indicate the need to do so; and, to close any portion of Louisiana's inside waters to protect small juvenile white shrimp if biological and technical data indicate the need to do so or enforcement problems develop.  The Secretary is further granted the authority to open any area, or reopen any previously closed area, and to open and close special shrimp seasons in any portion of state waters. 

For a map detailing these openings, click here.

Tow Time Regulations Reminder

Federal Turtle Excluder Device (TED) regulations require skimmer net fishermen to limit tow times.  Maximum tow times are 55 minutes from April 1 to October 31 and increase to 75 minutes from November 1 to March 31.

Please Report Hangs


The Fishermen's Gear Compensation Fund is for fishing gear lost within the Louisiana coastal zone due to unreported obstructions.  Only one application is taken for a given location.  Application packets are available, and the known sites are published, on the Department of Natural Resources website at: http://dnr.louisiana.gov/index.cfm?md=pagebuilder&tmp=home&pid=100, and recent sites are listed in the Louisiana Lagniappe newsletter of LA Sea Grant.  Only commercial fishermen earning more than 50% of their income from fishing are eligible for application.

For more information, contact Jeffrey Marx (337) 373-0032 or jmarx@wlf.la.gov

LDWF to Hold Two Public Meetings for Proposed Artificial Reef Sites in Lakes Pontchartrain and Calcasieu

Release Date: 08/05/2016


News Release


For Immediate Release
August 5, 2016

Contact: Rene LeBreton
Public Information
(504) 286-8745




LDWF to Hold Two Public Meetings for Proposed Artificial Reef Sites in Lakes Pontchartrain and Calcasieu




Lake Pontchartrain, St. John Parish - Proposed artificial reef flyer and map

Calcasieu Lake, Cameron Parish - Proposed artificial reef flyer and map


Lake Pontchartrain Artificial Reef Meeting

Who:  LDWF Artificial Reef Staff
What: Public information meeting to receive comments and provide information about a proposed artificial reef site located in the southwest portion of Lake Pontchartrain at the site of an existing shell pad approximately 1.3 miles from Frenier Landing
When: Tuesday, August 16, 2016 at 6:00 pm
Where: East Bank Regional Library, 4747 W Napoleon Ave, Metairie, LA 70001

For additional information, questions, or comments please contact:
Ashley Ferguson at 225-761-2395 or aferguson@wlf.la.gov

Calcasieu Lake Artificial Reef Meeting

Who:  LDWF Artificial Reef Staff
What:  Public information meeting to provide information and receive comments about the reef site located in the southern portion of Calcasieu Lake
When: Wednesday, August 17, 2016 at 6:00 pm
Where:  Calcasieu Parish LSU AgCenter Office, 7101 Gulf Hwy., Lake Charles, LA 70607

For additional information, questions, or comments please contact:
Craig Gothreaux at 225-761-2396 or cgothreaux@wlf.la.gov

These meetings will be open to the public.

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 and CPRA announce progress of Elmer’s Island beach and dune restoration and shift in construction activities

Release Date: 08/04/2016

LDWF and CPRA announce progress of Elmer’s Island beach and dune restoration and shift in construction activities

For Immediate Release:

(August 3, 2016) –Beginning on August 10, 2016 the beach area of Elmer’s Island will be closed for 12 days to the public as construction activities progress near the public parking area where the access road meets the beach.

Construction activities on the west side of Elmer’s Island access road will be near completion on August 22 and, once construction activities safely progress to the east past the parking area, foot traffic will reopen to the west side of the island. Parking and pedestrian access areas will be marked accordingly. Project construction is anticipated to continue on the east side of the island through the fall.

To view a map of the areas to be closed see above.

The Coastal Protection and Restoration Authority (CPRA) is restoring the beach habitat of the Caminada Headland by transporting sand from Ship Shoal, an underwater sand body located approximately 30 miles away in the Gulf of Mexico to restore habitat on the barrier shoreline. The restoration of the headland occurred in two project increments. Increment I of the project (the western half) was completed in December of 2014 and restored approximately 300 acres and 6 miles of beach and dune habitat. Increment I was funded with Coastal Impact Assistance Program (CIAP) and state surplus funds. Increment II (the eastern half) is larger and will restore approximately 500 acres and 7 miles of beach and dune. Increment II is being funded through the Gulf Environmental Benefit Fund, which was established by the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation in the wake of the Deepwater Horizon oil spill to manage funds resulting from the settlement of federal criminal charges against BP and Transocean. In total, the two projects will restore 13 miles of Louisiana’s barrier shoreline and represent one of the largest restoration projects ever constructed by the CPRA with a combined project investment of over $200 million.

“We are pleased with the progress being made on this project and are doing all we can to limit the impact to our recreational users and fishermen as construction activities continue,” said Charlie Melancon, Secretary of the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries.

“The Caminada Headlands project is significant in a number of ways: at over $200 million it is the largest restoration project CPRA has implemented to date; by fortifying 13 miles of the headland it will truly make an impact on the landscape; and it is significant because it represents the way that the work put into our Coastal Master Plan is now and will continue to be used to drive the implementation of the most crucial projects for our coast”, said CPRA Chairman Johnny Bradberry.

For further information, contact Rene LeBreton at the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries at rlebreton@wlf.la.gov, 504-286-8745.

Drawdown Scheduled on Cheniere Lake

Release Date: 08/03/2016

The Ouachita Parish Police Jury has scheduled a drawdown on Cheniere Lake to facilitate repair work on LA Highway 3033, which was severely damaged by flooding earlier this year. The project also includes the installation of a new bridge and spillway.
The drawdown is scheduled to begin Wednesday, August 10, 2016. The lake will be lowered approximately 4 inches per day to a maximum depth of 6 feet below pool stage. Repair work will take approximately 12 to 18 months to complete. 
The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries supports the drawdown, as it is an effective fisheries management tool. LDWF has made similar recommendations in years prior to accelerate the decomposition of leaf litter and improve the spawning substrate for bottom nesting fish. These drawdowns have met opposition from both waterfowl hunters and anglers. As a compromise, LDWF has lowered the lake to 3 feet below pool stage on an annual basis since 1998.
Although the lake will not be closed to fishing or other activities, caution is advised of boaters during this period, as most boat lanes will not provide for adequate clearance of underwater obstructions.
For additional information regarding the drawdown, contact the Ouachita Parish Police Jury at (318) 327-1340.

LDWF Schedules Drawdown on Clear-Smithport Lake

Release Date: 08/02/2016

The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries and the Bayou Pierre Game and Fish Commission have scheduled a drawdown on Clear-Smithport Lake in Desoto Parish for giant salvinia control, organic reduction and fish habitat improvement.  The drawdown is designed to reduce the further expansion of salvinia, as summertime temperatures promote maximum growth.
The water control structure is scheduled to open on August 18, 2016, and the lake should dewater at a rate of 2 to 4 inches per day.  The water will be lowered to a maximum drawdown level of 4 feet below normal pool stage.  The Clear-Smithport control gates are scheduled for closure on December 1, 2016, to allow the lake to refill for winter and early spring recreational activities.
During the drawdown, an estimated 600 to 700 acres of water will remain in open areas.  Boaters may still access the main waterbody with small craft from the Desoto Parish Ramp at the Highway 509 Bridge.  Caution is advised during launching and when on the water, as numerous boating hazards will be present.
This action is a necessary component of LDWF’s integrated management plan to control overabundant aquatic vegetation growth and to improve access for recreational activities.  An annual cycle of high and low water fluctuation can provide beneficial effects similar to a natural overflow lake system.
For additional information regarding the drawdown, contact Villis Dowden, LDWF Biologist, at vdowden@wlf.la.gov or (318) 357-3214.  

LDWF Accepting Lottery Applications for Waterfowl Hunts at Sherburne WMA South Farm Wetland Development Area

Release Date: 08/02/2016

Aug. 2, 2016 - The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) is accepting applications for waterfowl lottery hunts to be held at the South Farm Wetland Development Area at Sherburne Wildlife Management Area (WMA) for the 2016-17 hunting season.
These special hunts are restricted to hunters selected through the lottery application process. Details on the qualifications, application requirements and dates of the hunts are listed on the application form.
Successful applicants will be selected by a random computer drawing.  Applications for the lottery must be submitted to LDWF by Sept. 30. A $5 administrative fee must be submitted with each application.
Applications and more information may be obtained by contacting your local LDWF field office or by visiting the LDWF web site at http://www.wlf.louisiana.gov/hunting/lottery-hunts .
Applications may be delivered in person to Room 442 of the LDWF headquarters building located at 2000 Quail Dr. in Baton Rouge or by mail.  The mailing address is: Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries, Wildlife Division, P.O. Box 98000, Baton Rouge, LA 70898-9000.
For more information, contact Tony Vidrine at 337-948-0255 or tvidrine@wlf.la.gov.

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