The Louisiana Falconry Program has undergone some major changes recently. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) that has historically regulated the sport of falconry, recently transferred control of state falconry programs to each individual state, provided they met some minimum requirements. One of these requirements was that states had to adopt a new set of rules and regulations that met standards set by the FWS. Therefore, LDWF has a new set of comprehensive falconry rules in place and has streamlined the licensing process. Most of the basic requirements are still in place but falconers no longer need to obtain a federal falconry permit in addition to a state falconry license.
The following is a brief description of the falconry program and licensing process. Detailed information is available through the links below.
There are three classes of falconers: Apprentice, General and Master. Apprentice falconers are required to be sponsored by a general or master falconer for two years. During this time the sponsor will train the apprentice in the ways of falconry. These include building a quality housing facility, using the necessary equipment, rules and regulations, trapping and caring for a raptor, hunting techniques and reporting requirements, among other things. A list of potential sponsors will be available here soon. Until then, contact one of the falconry coordinators for assistance in obtaining a sponsor.
Anyone interested in becoming a falconer should download the Falconry Information Packet below. This packet contains a checklist of the necessary steps required for obtaining a falconry license. Please read the Falconry Rules, Raptor Housing Information and Falconry Exam Information to become familiar with what is required of falconers. New falconers are required to pass a 100 question exam before they can be licensed. This exam is thorough and covers all aspects of the sport. Recommended study material is listed on the Falconry Exam Information page.
Obtaining a falconry license requires that applicants locate a sponsor, pass the exam, build a housing facility, obtain the required equipment and pass a facility and equipment inspection. Once these things are done, the application can be submitted. The license fee is $25.00 annually. The facility inspection is a $50.00 one-time fee. New applicants should submit the application along with certified check or money order for $75.00.
Falconers are required to report their activity (trapping a new bird, releasing a bird, transferring a bird etc.) to the FWS on an electronic reporting form. If you need to make a report, click the link below and follow the instructions.