LDWF News

LDWF News Release

LDWF Announces 2014 Duck Stamp Contest

Release Date: 05/23/2013

May 23, 2013 -- The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) has announced the rules and timeframe for the 2014 Louisiana Waterfowl Conservation Stamp, or Louisiana Duck Stamp competition.
 
“Since our competition returned to a featured waterfowl species selected by the artist for the 2010 stamp, the quality of the entries and eventual winner has been outstanding,” said Larry Reynolds, LDWF Waterfowl Study leader. “The pair of mallards that will grace the 2013 Louisiana Duck Stamp is another excellent example.”
 
Because of the high quality of the artwork submitted during the past four contests, LDWF is once again allowing artists to choose the species for this year's entries, except Northern pintails, Wood ducks, American wigeon, or Mallard.  This will be the final year of open contests.  Any species of waterfowl known to winter in Louisiana, EXCEPT Northern pintail, Wood duck, American wigeon or Mallard may be submitted to this year’s contest for the 2014 stamp.  Artists are reminded of the requirement for associated habitat.
 
“The primary objective of this program is to provide revenue to create, enhance, and maintain habitat for waterfowl and associated wetland wildlife,” said Reynolds. “So a habitat component is required in each entry and is one of the five judging criteria,” said Reynolds. 
 
To enter, an artist must submit an original, unpublished work of art, along with a signed and notarized artist's agreement and a $50 entry fee.  Entries should be addressed to:
Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries
Attn: Louisiana Waterfowl Conservation Stamp Program
2000 Quail Drive
Baton Rouge, LA 70808
 
Entries will be accepted from Monday, October 14 through Tuesday, October 22, 2013 with the contest to be held in the Louisiana Room at the LDWF Headquarters building starting at 10 a.m. on Wednesday, October 23, 2013.  The public is invited to attend.
 
Please visit this link to obtain the 2014 Louisiana Waterfowl Conservation Stamp competition artist agreement and see the full list of rules: http://www.wlf.louisiana.gov/hunting/2014-louisiana-duck-stamp-contest
 
The Louisiana Legislature authorized the Louisiana Waterfowl Conservation Stamp program in 1988.  The program was created to generate revenues for conservation and enhancement of waterfowl populations and habitats in Louisiana.  During the last 24 years, over $11 million has been generated for wetland conservation with approximately $5 million spent on land acquisition.  In addition, revenues have supported wetland development projects on Wildlife Management Areas and the Louisiana Waterfowl Project, a cooperative endeavor between LDWF, Ducks Unlimited and the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service to provide habitat for waterfowl and other wetland birds on private lands.
 
Judging for the art competition will be based on the following criteria:
 
1. Accuracy of form, size, proportion, color and posture.
2. Level and accuracy of detail in all aspects of the waterfowl.
3. Appropriateness, accuracy and detail in depiction of the habitat.
4. Attractiveness and creativity in composition, subject, background and lighting.
5. Suitability for reproduction as stamps and prints.
 
A panel of judges with experience in waterfowl biology and/or artistic method will select the winning design. The competition is open to all artists 18 years of age and older.  Employees of LDWF and members of their immediate families are ineligible.
 
For more information, contact Larry Reynolds at 225-765-0456 or lreynolds@wlf.la.gov.

 

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Gretna Fishermen Ordered to Pay Over $60,000

Release Date: 05/23/2013

The Office of the General Counsel Enforcement Section within the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) and National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) issued a civil monetary penalty in the amount of $62,500 to a Gretna fishing boat captain on May 14.

The civil monetary penalty stems from a joint investigation between the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF), U.S. Coast Guard (USCG) and NOAA that resulted in Nam Nguyen, 52, captain of The Blue Fin, receiving citations for allegedly violating highly migratory species (HMS) regulations.

Nguyen and The Blue Fin were jointly charged to pay the $62,500 penalty for using pelagic longline gear for Atlantic HMS in federal waters with live bait and for possessing “J” hooks while possessing an HMS permit.

Agents received a complaint from NOAA Fisheries that the USCG discovered The Blue Fin fishing in federal waters with live bait while also using pelagic longline gear on March 18.  LDWF agents boarded the vessel when it returned to Dulac on March 19 and found J-hooks, pelagic longline gear and three places to hold live bait.

It is illegal to fish for HMS in the Gulf of Mexico with live bait and J-hooks when using pelagic longline gear.  Circle hooks and either artificial lures or dead bait can be used with a highly migratory species permit when using pelagic longline gear.

Agents seized 2,861 pounds of yellowfin tuna and a total of 623 pounds of swordfish, wahoo and escolar, pelagic longline gear and two buoys.

LDWF Agents participating in the case are Sgt. Louis Burnett, Senior Agents Dean Aucoin and Norman Deroche and Sgt. Ted Dewitt.  NOAA Fisheries Special Agent Steve Campbell and USCG Ensign Zack Bowman also assisted in the case.

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

Statue Honors Enforcement Agents Killed in the Line of Duty

Release Date: 05/21/2013

Statue Honors Enforcement Agents Killed in the Line of Duty

May 21, 2012 -- The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) dedicated a statue today, May 21, in Baton Rouge to honor those Enforcement Division agents who have died in the line of duty.

The statue depicts an LDWF Enforcement Division agent in an honor guard uniform with his head bowed honoring fallen agents.  The statue sits on top of a granite pedestal that is engraved with the names of the seven LDWF agents that have been killed in the line of duty.

“Enforcement agents have a very dangerous job since they are often in remote areas by themselves without backup and sometimes at night.  The training the agents receive alleviates a lot of the dangers that the job brings, but there are still a lot of instances where agents put themselves in harm’s way,” said Col. Winton Vidrine, head of the LDWF Enforcement Division.  “This statue will memorialize those agents that lost their lives while upholding rules and regulations that protect Louisiana’s natural resources.”

The Louisiana Wildlife Agents Association (LWAA) purchased and donated the statue to LDWF where it will permanently stand at their headquarters building.

The following are the agents who are engraved on the pedestal and honored by the statue:

Sgt. Paul Stuckey, 47, was shot and killed when his shotgun accidentally discharged on Sept. 30, 2011.  Sgt. Stuckey was responding to reports of night hunting in West Feliciana Parish at the time of the accidental discharge.  Sgt. Stuckey was an 18 year veteran and is survived by his wife and three children.

Agent Jim Matkin, 30, was killed in an automobile accident while on-duty in Concordia Parish on March 2, 2005.  Agent Matkin was a six year veteran and was survived by his parents, two sisters and a step-son.

Capt. John Garlington, 53, drowned while investigating a report of illegal gill net fishing on the Mill Creek Reservoir in Bienville Parish on Feb. 10, 2000.  Capt. Garlington was responding to the report at approximately 3 a.m.  Capt. Garlington was a 14 year veteran.

Agent Leon Henderson, 36, was killed in an accident while en route to a reported drowning in Morehouse Parish.  Agent Henderson was transported to a local hospital where he died two weeks later on March 30, 1996.  Agent Henderson was a 15 year veteran and was survived by his wife and daughter.

Agent Ricky Dodge, 37, was killed when his all-terrain vehicle flipped over as he was responding to a call about a game violation on Jan. 21, 1992 in Avoyelles Parish.  Agent Dodge was survived by his wife, son and daughter.

Agent Kenneth Aycock, 35, drowned while on duty on July 6, 1991 in Morehouse Parish.  Agent Aycock was survived by his wife and two sons.

Agent Frank Fagot, 31, was shot and killed by a poacher he was attempting to arrest on Nov. 29, 1927.  Agent Fagot was survived by his wife and two children.

LDWF dates back to 1912 when it was constitutionally created as the Conservation Commission of Louisiana as a department of state government, making the Law Enforcement Division 101 years old.

LDWF and LWAA will hold a ceremony in the fall to honor those whom gave the ultimate sacrifice while performing their duties as LDWF enforcement agents.

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

L.D.W.F. Announces 2013 Alligator Lottery Hunts

Release Date: 05/21/2013

May 21, 2013 -- In order to continue to provide alligator harvest opportunities, the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) will select eligible alligator hunters through a lottery selection system on four Coastal & Nongame Resources (CNR) Division Wildlife Management Areas (WMAs), 15 Wildlife Division WMAs, one U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACOE) property and 24 public lakes for the 2013 alligator harvest season.
 
The CNR Division WMAs include: Atchafalaya Delta WMA, St. Mary Parish; Pass A Loutre WMA, Plaquemines Parish; Pointe Aux Chenes WMA, Terrebonne and Lafourche parishes; and Salvador/Timken WMAs, St. Charles Parish. 
 
The Wildlife Division WMAs/USACOE property include: Big Lake WMA, Tensas Parish; Boeuf WMA, Caldwell Parish; Buckhorn WMA, Tensas Parish; Elm Hall WMA, Assumption Parish; Grassy Lake WMA, Avoyelles Parish; Joyce WMA, Tangipahoa Parish; Manchac WMA, St. John the Baptist Parish; Maurepas Swamp WMA, St. John the Baptist, St. James, Ascension, Livingston and Tangipahoa parishes; Sherburne WMA (state portion only), Pointe Coupee and St. Martin parishes; Spring Bayou WMA, Avoyelles Parish; Pearl River WMA, St. Tammany Parish; Red River WMA, Concordia Parish; Three Rivers WMA, Concordia Parish; Dewey Wills WMA, LaSalle and Catahoula Parishes; Indian Bayou (USACOE), St. Landry and St. Martin parishes; and Russell Sage WMA, Ouachita and Morehouse parishes.
 
The public lakes include: Lake Bistineau, Webster, Bossier and Bienville parishes; Lake Wallace, Caddo Parish; Black/Cypress Lake, Bossier Parish; Cross Lake, Caddo Parish; Kepler Lake, Bienville Parish; Bayou Desiard North, Ouachita Parish; Caney Lake, Jackson Parish; Bayou Bartholomew, Ouachita and Morehouse parishes; Kincaid Lake, Rapides Parish; Indian Creek, Rapides Parish; Cotile Lake, Rapides Parish; Nantachie Lake, Grant Parish; Saline Lake, Winn Parish; Toledo Bend, Desoto and Sabine parishes; Lake Bruin, Tensas Parish; Lake Concordia, Concordia Parish; Lake St. John, Tensas Parish; Lake St. Joseph, Tensas Parish; Anacoco Lake, Vernon Parish; Caddo Lake, Caddo Parish; Black Lake, Natchitoches Parish; Bundicks Lake, Beauregard Parish; and Lake D’Arbonne, Union Parish.
 
Interested participants may print out an application from LDWF’s website at www.wlf.louisiana.gov/hunting/lottery-hunts or request an application by phone for CNR Division WMAs at 337-373-0032 or Wildlife Division WMAs and public lakes at 225-765-2346.
 
To assist applicants in selecting specific WMAs/public lakes, LDWF has posted the percentage of lottery alligator harvest applicants selected in 2012 by WMA or public lake on its website at www.wlf.louisiana.gov/lottery-alligator-harvest-program.
 
Applications and non-refundable application fees ($5) must be submitted to the address indicated on corresponding applications and be postmarked by July 5, 2013.  Only one of the three available lottery alligator harvest applications (CNR Division WMA, Wildlife Division WMA or Wildlife Division Public Lakes) may be submitted per applicant.  Additional applications will result in voiding all applications of the applicant.
 
The lottery alligator harvests will be conducted between Aug. 28 and Oct. 3.  Exact harvest dates will vary by WMA/public lake and will be specified at the time selected hunters are notified.  Selected hunters may be assigned specific areas to conduct alligator harvest activities on certain WMAs/public lakes.
 
Applicants must be a legal Louisiana resident and 16 years of age or older.  All successful applicants will be required to purchase an alligator hunting license ($25).  Successful applicants for WMAs will be required to submit payments ($40) for each alligator tag allocated.
 
All applicants meeting the application requirements will be entered into a randomized computer drawing, which will take place by August, 2013.  Selected hunters will be notified by mail.
 
For more information concerning CNR Division WMAs, contact Lance Campbell at 337-373-0032 or ljcampbell@wlf.la.gov.  For more information concerning Wildlife Division WMAs or public lakes, contact Steve Smith at 225-765-2346 or ssmith@wlf.la.gov.
 
 

 

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LDWF Hosting Kids Fishing Day Camp in June at Woodworth Outdoor Education Center

Release Date: 05/20/2013

May 20, 2013 -- The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) is hosting a Kids Fishing Day Camp for children 10 to 15 years of age at Woodworth Outdoor Education Center from June 10 to 13, 2013.
 
The Monday through Thursday day camp will provide activities from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the education center located at 661Robinson Bridge Road in Woodworth, south of Alexandria.  The camp is designed to create future, responsible anglers by providing campers with an appreciation for the sport of fishing and the basic skills needed to enjoy this outdoor recreation activity.
 
Campers will be supervised by LDWF education staff and volunteers during activities that will include  how to rig fishing equipment, fish identification, boating safety, cast netting, kayak fishing, how to clean the catch and much more.
 
Registration fees are $75.00 per child and the camp is limited to the first 20 participants registered. Lunch will be provided daily and each child will receive a rod/reel combo and stocked tackle box provided by the Association of Louisiana Bass Clubs.
 
For more information, or to obtain a registration form, contact Angela Capello at (318) 748-6914 or acapello@wlf.la.gov. Registration forms are also available via the LDWF website at 2013 Woodworth Fishing Camp registration form
 

 

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Louisiana Oyster Task Force Meeting

Release Date: 05/20/2013

The following is the agenda for the Louisiana Oyster Task Force Meeting. The public is invited to attend.

Thursday, May 23 1:00 PM

UNO Advanced Technology Center, 2021 Lakeshore Drive, Suite 210, New Orleans

AGENDA

I.  Roll Call

II.  Approval of  March 19, 2013  MINUTES

III. Treasury Report

      A. Oyster Tag Sales

      B. LOTF Financial Report

IV.  Committee Reports

A.  Public and Private Oyster Grounds Committee – (Buddy Pausina)

B.  Enforcement   - (Steve McManus)

C.  Legislative - (Jakov Jurisic)

D.  Research – (John Supan)

E.  Coastal Restoration – (Dan Coulon)

F.  Marketing –

 G.  Health – (Tenney Sibley)

                       H. Sustainability-

                V.  Old Business

                     A.  BP Oil Spill Remediation

                        1.  Claims Process

                        2.  Public Reef Remediation

                        3.   Oyster Lease Remediation

                     B.  Out Da Bayou      

              VI.  New Business

                     A.  Tom Soniat-Dermo Study

                     B. GOIC/ISSC Meetings

             VII.  Set Next Meeting

             VIII.  Adjourn

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Public Oyster Seed Ground Vessel Permit Appeals Board to Meet

Release Date: 05/20/2013

The Public Oyster Seed Ground Vessel Permit Appeals Board will meet on Thursday, May 23, 2013. The meeting will convene at 9:30 a.m. in Suite 200 of the University of New Orleans’ Advanced Technology Center located at 2021 Lakeshore Drive in New Orleans.

Agenda items for the meeting of the Public Oyster Seed Ground Vessel Permit Appeals Board are as follows:

1.  Approval of Minutes from December 4, 2012 Meeting

2.  Hearing of Deferred Appeals

     a.  Mark Tayamen

3.  Hearing of New Permit Appeals

     a.  Brett Johnson

     b.  Marty Melerine

     c.  Vlaho Mjehovich

      d.  Raymond Nehlig

4.  Hearing of Renewal Permit Appeals

      a.  Catfish Lake Oyster Co., LLC

      b.  Kerry Cosse

5.  Set next meeting date

6.  Receive Public Comments

7.   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.

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

 

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Up to $3,000 in Reward Money Offered for Information in Whooping Crane Shooting

Release Date: 05/17/2013

May 17, 2013 -- Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) Enforcement Division agents and U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) officials are looking for leads regarding a whooping crane that was found shot to death in Red River Parish.

The whooping crane was found and recovered from the bank of the Red River about two miles northwest of Loggy Bayou on April 16.  After a necropsy of the crane, it was determined that the bird was shot with a 6.5mm/.264 caliber projectile.

Investigators believe the bird was shot between April 10 and 14.  The whooping crane was a part of LDWF's whooping crane reintroduction program and was fitted with a GPS tracking device.  The last tracking point of the crane moving was on April 10 near where she was eventually found dead on April 16.  The last tracking point received was on April 14 at the location she was found.

This whooping crane was released in Louisiana on March 14, 2011.

LDWF’s Operation Game Thief program, the Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries Foundation and the USFWS are each offering up to $1,000 in rewards for a total of up to $3,000 in rewards for any information about this illegal shooting that leads to an arrest.  To report any information regarding this whooping crane shooting, please call 1-800-442-2511.

“Anytime we lose one of these cranes it sets us back in our efforts to restore the whooping crane population back to its historic levels in Louisiana,” said LDWF Secretary Robert Barham.  “These were once native birds to Louisiana and the department would like to see these cranes thrive again in the future with a sustainable population.”

USFWS Office of Law Enforcement for the Southeast Region Special Agent in Charge Luis Santiago said, "The shooting of this whooping crane is an insult to all law abiding hunters.  We ask the public to please share any information that will lead us to the shooter.”

LDWF has released 40 whooping cranes since 2011 and currently have 25 whooping cranes they are tracking.  This is the third whooping crane that has been found shot with the previous two having been shot in Jefferson Davis Parish in October of 2011.

The re-introduced whooping cranes came from the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) Patuxent Wildlife Research Center in Laurel, Md., and they were placed in the coastal marsh of Vermilion Parish within LDWF’s White Lake Wetlands Conservation Area (WCA).  This re-introduced population marked the first presence of whooping cranes in the wild in Louisiana since 1950.

LDWF is working cooperatively with the USFWS, USGS, the International Crane Foundation and the Louisiana Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Unit to bring the species back to the state.  This non-migratory flock of whooping cranes is designated as a non-essential, experimental population but is protected under state law, the Endangered Species Act, and the Migratory Bird Treaty Act.

Whooping cranes, the most endangered of all of the world’s crane species, were first added to the federal status of an endangered species on March 11, 1967.

Historically, both a resident and migratory population of whooping cranes were present in Louisiana through the early 1940s.  Whooping cranes inhabited the marshes and ridges of the state’s southwest Chenier Coastal Plain, as well as the uplands of prairie terrace habitat to the north.  Within this area, whooping cranes used three major habitats: tall grass prairie, freshwater marsh, and brackish/salt marsh.  The Louisiana crane population was not able to withstand the pressure of human encroachment, primarily the conversion of nesting habitat to agricultural acreage, as well as hunting and specimen collection, which also occurred across North America.  The last bird in southwest Louisiana was removed to a sanctuary in 1950.

The only self-sustaining wild population of whooping cranes migrates between Wood Buffalo National Park in the Northwest Territories of Canada and Aransas National Wildlife Refuge in Texas.  Multiple efforts are underway to bring this bird further along its path to recovery.  This includes increasing populations in the wild, ongoing efforts to establish a migratory population in the eastern United States, and establishing a resident population in Louisiana.

There are about 600 whooping cranes left in the world with 421 of those cranes living in the wild.

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

LDWF Announces Series of Wetland Management Workshops

Release Date: 05/17/2013

May 17, 2013 – The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) Technical Services Section will present Wetland Management Workshops in May and June at three locations throughout Louisiana’s Mississippi Alluvial Valley Region.  The target audience for these events will be landowners managing shallow water impoundments for waterfowl and wetland birds. 

The Thursday evening workshops are scheduled from 6 to 8:30 p.m. at the following locations:

May 30 -- Poverty Point Reservoir Visitor Center

1500 Poverty Point Parkway, Delhi, La.

June 13 -- Concordia Parish Sherriff’s Office Community Room

26356 Hwy. 15, Ferriday, La.

June 27 -- Avoyelles Parish School Board Meeting Room

221 Tunica Drive West, Marksville, La.

Each workshop will cover fundamentals associated with management of wetland impoundments for waterfowl and wetland birds. Topics will include timing of drawdowns, beneficial and invasive plant species, maintenance practices and a brief discussion on timber management in bottomland hardwood reforestation projects. Speakers will include LDWF technical services biologists, waterfowl and forestry program staff, and representatives from the USDA-NRCS. Experienced wetland managers will be on hand to discuss your particular situation.

Over the last 20 years, thousands of acres of wetland impoundments have been constructed, both independently and with the assistance of government cost share programs.  Some landowners are finding that, without management, these wetland units do not remain productive over extended periods of time.  There are certain management practices that must be utilized to maximize use by wetland birds.  Landowners managing Wetlands Reserve Program (WRP) properties should find this opportunity particularly beneficial. 

LDWF technical services biologists are available to provide technical assistance to support the efforts of Louisiana landowners. LDWF 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 more information on the workshops, contact John Hanks at 318-343-4044 or jhanks@wlf.la.gov .

 

 

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Louisiana Safe Boating Week Set For May 18-24

Release Date: 05/16/2013

To view boating safety videos about proper personal flotation device (PFD) wear for youths and PFD regulations, please visit www.wlf.louisiana.gov/enforcement.

May 16, 2013 -- Louisiana is once again participating in the national "Safe Boating Week" that is scheduled for May 18-24 and signifies the beginning of the spring and summer boating season.

The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) will again be reminding all boaters to be safe, responsible and knowledgeable while on the water during this safe boating week.  Safe Boating Week is a time for all boaters to inspect their vessels to ensure that all required safety equipment is on board and that vessels are in good working condition.

LDWF Enforcement Division agents will be out in full force as always during the week to perform boating safety checks and driving or operating a vessel while intoxicated (DWI) patrols.  Each vessel should have enough personal flotation devices (PFD) on board for all occupants and a sober operator.

"Personal flotation devices are made to be worn and not sit in a vessel storage compartment.  Even if you consider yourself to be a strong swimmer, we (LDWF) still encourage everyone on a boat to wear a personal flotation device whenever the boat is in motion," said LDWF Boating Safety Officer Capt. Rachel Zechenelly.  “A personal flotation device on a boat should be treated the same as a seatbelt in a car, because they are both easy to use and are proven to save lives."

LDWF boating incident statistics indicate that 15 out of the 25 boating fatalities in 2012 officially listed drowning as the cause of death.  LDWF regulations state that anyone 16 years of age and younger must wear a PFD while underway in vessels less than 26 foot long.  For more boating and PFD regulations, please visit www.wlf.louisiana.gov/boating.

Alcohol use is another leading cause of boating crash incidents and fatalities on the water.  Alcohol consumption impairs a boater's judgment, balance, vision and reaction time.  Alcohol also increases fatigue and susceptibility to hypothermia.  Intensifying the effects of alcohol are sun, wind, noise, vibration and movement, which are all common to boating activities.

The penalties for DWI on the water are the same as on the road.  Anyone cited for a DWI on the water or on the road will lose his or her driver's license and boating privileges for the specified time ordered by the judge in the case.  Also, each offense of operating a vehicle or vessel while intoxicated counts toward the total number of DWI crimes whether they happened on the water or road.

In Louisiana a DWI can be issued to anyone operating a moving vessel or vehicle with a blood alcohol concentration of .08 or higher.  First offense DWI on the water or on the road carries a $300 to $1,000 fine and up to six months in jail.  Second offense DWI brings a $750 to $1,000 fine and between 30 days and six months in jail.  Third offense DWI carries a $5,000 fine and between one and five years in jail.  Again, every DWI offense is also subject to a suspension of driving a vehicle and operating a boat privileges.

"One of the best parts of our job is to see people utilize Louisiana's waterways for recreation in accordance to the boating safety regulations and return home safely to loved ones.  However, the worst part of our job is to search for deceased bodies and notify family members of their loss," said LDWF Lt. Col. Jeff Mayne, the State Boating Law Administrator.  "The two ways to make boating safe, fun and a memorable experience is to have a sober operator and to have everyone wear a personal flotation device when the vessel is underway."

LDWF also wants to remind anybody born after Jan. 1, 1984 that they are required to successfully complete a National Association of State Boating Law Administrators (NASBLA) boating education course to operate a motorboat over 10 horsepower.  LDWF offers these classes free of charge statewide.  For a list of courses, please visit www.wlf.louisiana.gov/boating/courses.

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

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