LDWF News

LDWF News Release

LDWF Reminds Anglers of Several Items Prior to Fishing Offshore

Release Date: 03/05/2016

With great offshore weather approaching, the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries takes this opportunity to remind anglers of a few important items:

 

1.   The state water boundary for Louisiana waters has been extended from three to nine nautical miles for reef fish management purposes.

2.   The daily limit for red snapper is 2 per person with a 16-inch minimum length (note: an error in the quick-reference guide of  our printed regulations indicated 3 per person – this is an error)

3.   The free, Recreational Offshore Landing Permit is required for all anglers possessing tunas, billfish, swordfish, amberjacks, groupers and snappers, hinds, cobia, wahoo and dolphin.  This does not apply to anglers under 16 years of age or anglers fishing on a paid-for-hire trip where the captain holds a permit. Anglers wishing to obtain or renew a permit can register at https://rolp.wlf.la.gov.

 

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 or www.FishLA.org. To receive recreational or commercial fishing email and text alerts, signup at www.wlf.la.gov/signup.

Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries Commission Amends Proposed Notice of Intent for 2016-17 Hunting Seasons Rules and Regulations

Release Date: 03/05/2016

March 5, 2016 – The Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries Commission voted Thursday (March 3) to make several amendments to the proposed notice of intent for the 2016-17 hunting seasons, rules and regulations. 

The commission voted to alter the first split of duck hunting season in the West Zone, eliminating the final week of the initial split and moving that week to the end of the second split in January.

The first split for the West Zone will run from Nov. 12-27 with the second split set for Dec. 17-Jan. 29 and the youth hunts scheduled for Nov. 5 and Feb. 4.

The action came during Thursday’s monthly meeting in Alexandria.

The commission also voted for other amendments to the Notice of Intent, including:

  • Amending a section of the General and Wildlife Management Area Rules and Regulations to allow mud boats and air-cooled propulsion engines after 2 p.m. from September through January in parts of the Pass-a-Loutre WMA, including South Pass, Pass-a-Loutre, Southeast Pass, Loomis Pass, Dennis Pass and Cadro Pass.
  • Amending the 2016-17 Canada Goose season to open Nov. 5 for the first split in both the north and south zones. Both zones will close on Dec. 4 for the first split.
  • Allowing the use of dogs for the harvest of feral hogs in a portion of Dewey W. Wills WMA north of the Catahoula Lake Diversion Canal during the month of February.

To view the full notices of intent and all proposed hunting season dates and regulations changes, visit http://www.wlf.louisiana.gov/action-items .

Public comment will be accepted from now through April 6 and may be submitted directly to Steve Smith, LDWF Wildlife Division, P.O. Box 98000, Baton Rouge, LA 70898-9000, or via email to ssmith@wlf.la.gov .

For more information, contact Steve Smith at 225-765-2359 or ssmith@wlf.la.gov .

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LWF Commission Establishes Management Reference Points for Selected Saltwater Finfish

Release Date: 03/03/2016

(March 3, 2016) – Today, the Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries Commission took action on a Notice of Intent to establish management reference points for black drum, sheepshead and southern flounder as authorized through Act 205 of the 2015 regular session of the Louisiana Legislature. 

A management target is defined as a fishing rate, biomass level or other fishery metric indicating stocks are sustainably fished. Management targets were developed from each stock’s history based on the most recent stock assessments for each species.

If an assessment indicates that current regulations do not meet or not likely to meet the established goals for a stock, the Department will provide management options to the LWF Commission for consideration.

To view the full notice of intent or for species-specific data, 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 May 5, 2016.

 

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 or www.FishLA.org. To receive recreational or commercial fishing email and text alerts, signup at http://www.wlf.la.gov/signup.

Agenda for March Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries Commission Meeting

Release Date: 02/29/2016

Live Audio/Video stream of this meeting is available via GotoWebinar.com.  

Please register at: https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/6617274765261766660

After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the webinar.

 
 

*Please note the start time and location for the March Commission meeting (in Red)

 

Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries Commission March Meeting

10:30AM  Rapides Parish Government Building   

   701 Murray St. Alexandria, LA  71309

March 3, 2016

 

 

AGENDA:

 

1.    Call to Order       

2.    Roll Call

3.    Approval of Minutes from February 04, 2016 Meeting

4.    Commission Special Announcements / Personal Privilege       

5.    To hear Enforcement Reports February 2016    

6.    To Present the 2015 Shikar Safari Club International Enforcement Agent of the

Year Award

7.    To Present the Enforcement Waterfowl Officer of the Year Award                          

8.    To consider a Declaration of Emergency to continue the suspension of entry into the Louisiana Fisheries Forward Program for the Commercial Crab Industry

9.    To consider a Notice of Intent establishing the management targets for selected Finfish species

10.  To hear an update on comments regarding the 2015-2016 and 2016-2017 General and WMA Hunting Seasons and Rules and Regulations, 2017 General and WMA Turkey Hunting Season and Rules and Regulations, and 2016-2017 Migratory Birds Regulations, Seasons, and Bag Limits Notice of Intent and to Consider any amendments thereto

11.  To hear an update on the Game and Fish Preserves’ governing authorities contacts

12.  Set July 2016 Meeting Date

13.  Receive Public Comments

14.  Adjournment  

 

Live Audio/Video stream available via GotoWebinar.com.  

Please register at:

https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/6617274765261766660

After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the webinar.

 

 

The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries is charged with managing and protecting Louisiana’s abundant natural resources. For more information, visit us atwww.wlf.la.gov or www.FishLA.org. To receive recreational or commercial fishing email and text alerts, signup at http://www.wlf.la.gov/signup.

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Public Oyster Seed Ground Vessel Permit Appeals Board to Meet 2-2-16

Release Date: 02/29/2016

 

Public Oyster Seed Ground Vessel Permit Appeals Board Meeting

Wednesday, March 2, 2016, 10:30 a.m.

University of New Orleans’ Advanced Technology Center

2021 Lakeshore Drive, suite 210

New Orleans, LA

 

AGENDA:

 

1.     Roll Call of Board Members

2.     Approval of Minutes from February 2, 2016 Meeting

3.     Hearing of Deferred Renewal Permit Appeals

a.     Myron Prosperie

4.     Hearing of New Renewal Permit Appeals

a.     Aaron Tillman

b.     Gary Barthelemy

5.     Update on Recommendations Made at February 2, 2016 Meeting

6.     Receive Public Comments

7.     Set next meeting date

8.     Adjournment

This Board was established by Act 922 of the 2008 Regular Legislative Session for the purpose of hearing appeals of vessel permit denials by LDWF. Act 922 requires that anyone commercially harvesting oysters on the public oyster seed grounds and reservations, except those in Calcasieu Lake and Sabine Lake, must do so from a vessel holding a public oyster seed ground vessel permit issued by LDWF.

The meeting will be held in compliance with Louisiana’s Open Meetings Law as defined by Louisiana R.S. 42:11, et seq.  The public is invited to attend.

For more information, please contact Ty Lindsey at 225-765-2387 or tlindsey@wlf.la.gov

 

 

Secretary Charlie Melancon Addresses Coastal Conservation Association Annual Meeting

Release Date: 02/29/2016

 

News Release

 

For Immediate Release
February 27, 2016

 

Contact: Rene LeBreton

Public Information
LDWF

(504) 286-8745

rlebreton@wlf.la.gov

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Governor John Bel Edwards and LDWF Secretary Charlie Melancon address Louisiana Coastal Conservation Association (CCA) Annual Meeting

From left to right: LDWF staff Toby Gascon (Analytics Specialist), Secretary Charlie Melancon, Patrick Banks (Assistant Secretary of Fisheries) and Cole Garrett (Legislative Liason)

(February 27, 2016) –  While addressing CCA leadership and members at today's annual meeting, LDWF Secretary Charlie Melancon said, "We will dedicate all of the time and resources necessary to ensure that LDWF is one of the best, if not the best, state resource agency in the country". 

"The Department will continue with the efforts of the previous administration to protect state's rights to manage their own fisheries.  If we can't accomplish our goals of equal and open access under the current regional management system, then we would look toward alternatives"

Additionally, Secretary Melancon said, "I would like to commend Randy Pausina for the excellent job he did as Assistant Secretary of Fisheries and I look forward to him being part of the new team going forward".

The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries is charged with managing and protecting Louisiana’s abundant natural resources. For more information, visit us atwww.wlf.la.gov. To receive recreational or commercial fishing email and text alerts, signup at http://www.wlf.la.gov/signup.

 

Secretary Charlie Melancon Addresses Coastal Conservation Association Annual Meeting

Release Date: 02/29/2016

 

News Release
 
For Immediate Release
February 27, 2016
 
Contact: Rene LeBreton
Public Information
LDWF
(504) 286-8745
rlebreton@wlf.la.gov

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Governor John Bel Edwards and LDWF Secretary Charlie Melancon address Louisiana Coastal Conservation Association (CCA) Annual Meeting

From left to right: LDWF staff Toby Gascon (Analytics Specialist), Secretary Charlie Melancon, Patrick Banks (Assistant Secretary of Fisheries) and Cole Garrett (Legislative Liason)

(February 27, 2016) –  While addressing CCA leadership and members at today's annual meeting, LDWF Secretary Charlie Melancon said, "We will dedicate all of the time and resources necessary to ensure that LDWF is one of the best, if not the best, state resource agency in the country". 

"The Department will continue with the efforts of the previous administration to protect state's rights to manage their own fisheries.  If we can't accomplish our goals of equal and open access under the current regional management system, then we would look toward alternatives"

Additionally, Secretary Melancon said, "I would like to commend Randy Pausina for the excellent job he did as Assistant Secretary of Fisheries and I look forward to him being part of the new team going forward".

The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries is charged with managing and protecting Louisiana’s abundant natural resources. For more information, visit us atwww.wlf.la.gov. To receive recreational or commercial fishing email and text alerts, signup at http://www.wlf.la.gov/signup.

 

Oyster Task Force Scheduled to Meet

Release Date: 02/26/2016

Louisiana Oyster Task Force Meeting

John Tesvich, Chairman

Wednesday, March 2, 2016, 1:00 p.m.

2021 Lakeshore Drive, suite 210

New Orleans

 

 

AGENDA

I.              Roll call and introduction of guests

II.             Approval of February 16, 2016 Meeting Minutes and March 2, 2016 agenda

III.            Treasury Report

      A.      Oyster Tag Sales

      B.      LOTF Financial Report

IV.           Committee Reports

      A.      Public and Private Oyster Grounds Committee  (Mitch Jurisich)

      B.      Enforcement (Captain Chad Hebert)

      C.      Legislative (Jakov Jurisic)

      D.     Research (Patrick Banks)

      E.      Coastal Restoration (Dan Coulon)

      F.      Marketing (LDWF)

      G.      Health (Lance Broussard)

      H.     Sustainability (LDWF)

      I.        Professionalism (LDWF)

      J.      Aquaculture

      K.   Oyster Lease Moratorium Lifting Committee (John Tesvich)

V.             Old Business

      A.    Update on Proposed Leased Area within Public Seed Grounds- LDWF

VI.           New Business

      A.    Discussion of Marine Sanitation Device (MSD) requirements on Commercial and Recreational Fishing Vessels in Oyster Harvest Areas- Mitch Jurisich

      B.    April Oyster Relay in Closed Portion of Mississippi Sound- LDWF

      C.    Proposed Port of Gulfport Project in Biloxi Marsh- Elizabeth Calvit

      D.    Discussion of the VMS Cargo Vessel Requirements- Brad Robin

VII.       Public Comment

VIII.      Set Next Meeting

IX.        Adjourn

 

The meeting will be held in compliance with Louisiana’s Open Meetings Law as defined by Louisiana R.S. 42:11, et seq.  The public is invited to attend.  To listen in to the meeting via webinar register at https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/3685071867449987588

 

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 or www.FishLA.org. To receive recreational or commercial fishing email and text alerts, signup at http://www.wlf.la.gov/signup.

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Jackson-Bienville WMA Continues to be One of Louisiana’s Top Public Hunting Areas, Family Favorites

Release Date: 02/25/2016

Feb. 25, 2016 - Jackson-Bienville Wildlife Management  Area (WMA), which has been part of the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries WMA roster for more than 60 years, is a jewel for public hunting in north Louisiana.

Located 12 miles south of Ruston, the 25,089 acres of land located in Jackson, Bienville and Lincoln parishes is owned by Weyerhaeuser Company and managed as a Wildlife Management Area by the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF). It is situated close to three major population centers in Louisiana, including Shreveport (70 miles), Monroe (50 miles) and Alexandria (87 miles) in addition to Ruston.

Hunters enjoy pursuing white-tailed deer, wild turkey, feral hogs, squirrel, wood ducks and other small game species on the WMA. 

LDWF biologist supervisor Jeff Johnson oversees Jackson-Bienville WMA, and relates stories of hunters using the WMA over the years.

“It has been a place where families have passed down the tradition of hunting for many years,’’ Johnson said. “There are families from all over the state that hunt here and have been doing so for years. There are grandfathers that have come here since the early 1970s and have brought their kids and are now bringing their grandkids to hunt.  Hunting Jackson-Bienville is a fall tradition for them.’’

“The WMA lease is currently up for renewal and the Department will make Weyerhaeuser Company an offer to keep Jackson-Bienville in our WMA system,’’ LDWF Assistant Secretary Jimmy Anthony said.

Jackson-Bienville WMA is popular with hunters from all over the state and southeast, and although hunters account for the majority of the use, it is also a popular destination for bird watchers and hikers. Access is easy with many routes available, including U.S. Hwy. 167 and La. Hwy. 147. The terrain on Jackson Bienville WMA is primarily gently rolling hills bordering the Dugdemona River and five intermittent streams.

One of the reasons the area has become a hunting hotbed for deer and turkey, Johnson said, is Weyerhaeuser’s timber management philosophy.

Varying timber harvests, along with the interspersion of hardwood areas and more than 33 miles of utilities rights-of-way, provide a diversity of wildlife habitats. Adding to that diversity is the substantial acreage Weyerhaeuser has committed to providing nesting and foraging habitat for the red-cockaded woodpecker (RCW), a species listed as endangered by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.

LDWF monitors 38 RCW breeding groups on Jackson-Bienville WMA as part of the current WMA lease agreement.

The intensive management has also made it good for deer hunting, according to LDWF deer program manager Johnathan Bordelon.

“Jackson-Bienville WMA is a very productive WMA,’’ Bordelon said. “Active timber management has created desirable habitat conditions for deer. In addition, reproductive rates measured by the percentage of lactating adult female deer are above parish and northwest pine/hardwood averages. Lactation rates for 2.5 year and older does has averaged 80 percent over the past ten years. This is tremendous and allows for the sustainable harvest rates experienced on Jackson-Bienville WMA.

“Jackson-Bienville did experience a harvest rate of one deer per 5.0 efforts during the managed either-sex deer hunt on November 21-22, 2015. However, it is important to note that the managed hunt was one weekend before the majority of managed hunts in the state. The weather was much better that weekend and harvest benefited from the favorable conditions. Jackson-Bienville is typically in the top five each year regardless of weather conditions. ’’

Harvest numbers for turkey have also been strong at Jackson-Bienville WMA. During the 2015 season, a total of 42 gobblers were harvested, accounting for one turkey per 12.7 efforts, an impressive number for public land.

“Jackson-Bienville WMA has consistently been known as a good place to turkey hunt,’’ Johnson said. “It’s a place where many a new hunter has been introduced to the sport and where many ‘up and comers’ polish their skills.

“For many turkey hunters, it is the place they killed their first gobbler and many of them continue to hunt there to this day. Even some hunters who have private land on which to hunt still come here a few days each season for the change of pace and for tradition sake.’’

Jackson-Bienville WMA has also been key in turkey management research through the years. Dr. Jim Dickson, a retired professor and a known authority on turkey management, did a mortality study in conjunction with LDWF on Jackson-Bienville WMA. The results of the study helped in setting turkey season lengths and bag limits that are currently in place.

Jackson-Bienville WMA is one of 55 WMAs managed by LDWF. The 1.6 million acres in the WMA program provide habitat for numerous wildlife species and outdoor recreation opportunities.

For more information on the LDWF WMA program, go to http://www.wlf.louisiana.gov/wma. For more information on Jackson Bienville WMA go to http://www.wlf.louisiana.gov/wma/2771.

 

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LDWF Reopens Some Roads at Richard K. Yancey Wildlife Management Area

Release Date: 02/23/2016

Feb. 19, 2016 – The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries has reopened all roads in the Richard K. Yancey Wildlife Management Area (WMA) except for Lac-A-Sostien Road, Ross Road past the crowfoot, Dobbs Bay Road and all roads on the east side of the Mississippi River levee.
 
High water levels in associated river systems caused backwater flooding on those thoroughfares. Once the water recedes, LDWF will inspect, repair and reopen those roads when deemed safe for travel.
 
Richard K. Yancey WMA is located approximately 35 miles south of Ferriday on La. Hwy. 15 in lower Concordia Parish. 

For information on this WMA, go to http://www.wlf.louisiana.gov/wma/36994 or contact Tony Vidrine at 337-948-0255 or tvidirne@wlf.la.gov or Cody Haynes at 337-948-0255 or jhaynes@wlf.la.gov.

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