Release Date: 10/17/2006

Anyone interested in participating in the 2006 Discover Louisiana Hunting Weekend, scheduled for the Nov. 24-26 Thanksgiving weekend, now has more time to prepare.

The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) promotion, targeting new hunters who want to experience the outdoors, requires participants to complete a hunter education course before they receive a no-cost DLH permit. The original deadline for course completion had been Oct. 31, but the new deadline has been set for Nov. 15.

"It has never been easier to obtain hunter safety certification," said John Sturgis, LWDF Hunter Education Program manager. "If your busy schedule does not permit you to attend the standard education course, you can try our home study program. Students can study at their own pace and convenience, and then attend a six-hour field day for course completion."

The Discover Louisiana Hunting promotion allows both Louisiana residents and non-residents, 16 years of age and older, to experience recreational hunting for the first time or enjoy the sport again.  In addition to hunter education certification, participants must also partner with a licensed Louisiana resident hunter who will serve as a host hunter. The host hunter will serve as mentor for the DLH permittee and can be a relative, neighbor, friend or co-worker.

All interested participants who need to obtain hunter education certification are urged to sign up for a class in a location near their home town. A list of courses around the state is available on the DLH Web site -- www.discoverlouisianahunting.com. An on-line version of the course is available through the DLH web site or a CD-ROM version can be obtained by calling the LDWF office nearest the participant. Hunter education courses are free and certification obtained in another state will be accepted.

During the Discover Louisiana Hunting weekend, only quail, rabbit, squirrel and deer can be hunted.  For daily bag and possession limits and deer zone restrictions refer to the 2006-07 Louisiana Hunting Season and WMA Regulations Booklet or go to www.discoverlouisianahunting.com and click on "Regulations."

The DLH permit offer is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity.  Once a participant utilizes the no cost weekend hunting option, appropriate licenses and permits must be obtained for all future hunting trips in Louisiana. 

Any interested participant without Internet access can call any of the following LDWF offices Monday through Friday, from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., for permit application assistance:

 Alexandria: 1995 Shreveport Hwy., Pineville, LA 71360; ph. 318-487-5885
 Baton Rouge: 2000 Quail Drive, Baton Rouge, LA 70808; ph. 225-765-2346
 Ferriday: 261 Wildlife & Fishery Road, Ferriday, LA 71334; ph. 318-757-4571
 Grand Chenier: 5476 Grand Chenier Hwy., Grand Chenier, LA 70643; ph. 337-538-2276
 Lake Charles: 1213 North Lakeshore Dr., Lake Charles, LA 70601; ph. 337-491-2575
 Minden: 1401 Talton Street, Minden, LA 71055; ph. 318-371-3050
 Monroe: 368 Century Tel Drive, Monroe, LA 71203; ph. 318-343-4044
 New Iberia: 2415 Darnall Road, New Iberia, LA 70560; ph. 337-373-0032
 Opelousas: 5652 Highway 182, Opelousas, LA 70570; ph. 337-948-0255

DLH Weekend supporting sponsors and partners include: Academy Sports & Outdoors, Bass Pro Shops/Bossier City, Bayou State Bowhunters Association, Bowie Outfitters, Ducks Unlimited, Hunter's Run Gun Club, Louisiana Wildlife & Fisheries Foundation, Louisiana Wildlife Federation, National Wild Turkey Federation and Safari Club International.  

 For more information, contact John Sturgis at 225-763-5448 or jsturgis@wlf.louisiana.gov.