The Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries Commission (LWFC) approved two notices of intent that included changes for the 2008-09 Resident Small Game and Deer Seasons and Regulations and the 2008-09 Wildlife Management Area (WMA) Seasons and Regulations at their Feb. 7 meeting.
The notices of intent included some changes to past regulations. The following amendment changes are open for public comment until May 1 and will be voted for adoption at the June LWFC meeting.
To allow hunters on WMA daily permit deer hunts to harvest antlerless deer without counting against their season limit.
LDWF intends to request to change the age definition of youth hunts from 15 years of age and younger to 17 years of age and younger. This change has to go in front of the state legislature for their approval on private land youth hunts. Furthermore, youths 17 years of age and younger would be able to hunt deer on both private lands and WMAs with any shotgun using slugs only during the muzzleloader season in each deer hunting area.
To allow crossbows to become a legal means of take during the archery season by all hunters with an archery license.
To open the pheasant season concurrent with the quail season.
To add Boeuf, Clear Creek, Sandy Hollow, Spring Bayou and West Bay WMAs to the youth squirrel hunt areas for Sept. 27-28, 2008. To also add Loggy Bayou WMA to the youth mourning dove hunts for Saturday only on the first weekend of the dove season.
Raccoon hunters on WMAs would only need to submit a self-clearing permit instead of obtaining a special permit and submitting an annual report.
Horses and mules may still be ridden on WMAs except where prohibited and except during gun seasons for deer and turkey. Riding is restricted to designated roads and trails with all riders required to use self-clearing permits. However, organized trail rides would be prohibited on all WMAs.
To open the spring squirrel season from May 2-10, 2009 with or without dogs on all WMAs, except Biloxi, Camp Beauregard, Fort Polk and Peason Ridge WMAs.
To move the opening of the physically challenged hunt on the Alexander State Forest WMA to Oct. 11-12 to coincide with muzzleloader season on the WMA.
Mudboats or air-cooled propulsion engines greater than 36 horsepower would be prohibited on the Atchafalaya Delta and Pass-a-Loutre WMAs.
To open Jackson Bienville WMA to waterfowl hunting during the entire season except for Oct. 11-12 and Nov. 22-23, 2008.
To add 31 days to the archery season on Lake Boeuf WMA, with the season running from Oct. 1-15, bucks only, and Oct. 16-Jan. 31, either-sex. The youth deer lottery hunt on this WMA would be discontinued.
To allow youth hunting only on the opening Saturday of the opening weekend of the dove season on the Loggy Bayou WMA.
To add Dec. 6-7 and Dec. 13-14, 2008 as firearms either-sex dates on the Maurepas Swamp WMA. To also add a nighttime raccoon season from Jan. 19-Feb. 28, 2009.
On the Pearl River WMA, Nov. 28 would be the mandatory deer check hunt and Nov. 29-Dec. 12 would be self-clearing hunts for the either-sex firearms season. The WMA's firearms bucks only season would run from Dec. 13-28, 2008 and the muzzleloader either-sex season would run from Nov. 3-16, 2008 and Dec. 29-Jan. 16, 2009.
To add two more hunts to the youth lottery deer hunts on the Sherburne WMA.
LDWF proposed no changes to the 2008-09 seasons for resident small game. The season for 2008-09 for resident small game hunting seasons are:
Quail - Nov 15- Feb. 28, daily bag limit of 10 and possession limit of 20.
Rabbit and Squirrel - Oct. 4-Feb.28, daily bag limit of 8 and possession limit of 16.
Spring Squirrel - May 2 -24, daily bag limit of 3 and possession limit of 6.
The following is the deer hunting season dates broken down by area:
Area 1 - Archery: Oct. 1-Jan-31
Muzzleloader (Either-Sex): Nov. 8-14 and Jan. 19-25
Still Hunt: Nov. 15-Dec. 5 and Jan. 5-18
With or Without Dogs: Dec. 6-Jan. 4
Area 2 - Archery: Oct. 1-Jan. 31
Muzzleloader (Either-Sex): Oct. 18-24 and Jan. 12-18
Still Hunt: Oct. 25-Dec. 3
With or Without Dogs: Dec. 4-Jan. 11
Area 3 - Archery: Sept. 20-Jan. 15
Muzzleloader (Either-Sex): Oct. 11-17 and Dec. 1-5
Still Hunt: Oct. 18-Nov. 30 and Dec. 6-Jan. 11
Area 4 - Archery: Oct. 1-Jan. 31
Muzzleloader (Either-Sex): Nov. 1-7 and Jan. 5-12
Still Hunt: Nov. 8-Jan. 4
Area 5 - Archery: Oct. 1-Jan. 31
Muzzleloader (Bucks Only): Nov. 8-14 and Dec. 26-Jan. 1
Still Hunt: Nov. 28-Dec. 14
Area 6 - Archery: Oct. 1-15 bucks only and Oct. 16-Feb. 15 either sex
Muzzleloader (Either-Sex): Nov. 8-14 and Jan. 19-25
Still Hunt: Nov. 15-Dec 5
With or Without Dogs: Dec. 6-Jan. 18
Area 7 - Archery: Oct. 1-Jan. 31
Muzzleloader (Either-Sex): Oct. 11-17 and Nov. 1-7
Still Hunt: Oct. 18-31 and Nov. 8-30
With or Without Dogs: Dec. 1-Jan. 4
Area 8 - Archery: Sept. 20-Jan. 15
Muzzleloader (Either-Sex): Oct. 11-17 and Dec 1-5
Still Hunt: Oct. 18-Nov. 30
With or Without Dogs: Dec. 6-Jan. 11
Public hearings will be held throughout the state during March. Comments will also be accepted at regularly scheduled LWFC meetings from March through May. People may also submit written comments about the proposed notice of intents until the end of April to Jimmy Anthony, Wildlife Division, Department of Wildlife and Fisheries, P.O. Box 98000, Baton Rouge, LA 70898.
For more information, contact Jimmy Anthony at 225-765-2348 or firstname.lastname@example.org.