LDWF News

LDWF News Release

LDWF Closes Old Highway 11 on Pearl River Wildlife Management Area Due to Flooding

Release Date: 05/14/2019

May 14, 2019 - The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) has closed Old Highway 11 located on the northern part of Pearl River Wildlife Management Area (WMA) in St. Tammany Parish due to flooding.
 
Included in this closure is the Pearl River Honey Island Shooting Range located in the WMA. This closure is deemed necessary to ensure safety and prevent road damage. Once the water recedes, LDWF will inspect, repair and reopen the road once it is determined it is safe for travel.
 
The Pearl River WMA, which consists of 35,618 acres, is located approximately six miles east of Slidell and approximately one mile east of Pearl River.
 
For information on this WMA, go to http://www.wlf.louisiana.gov/wma/2789 or contact Bradley Breland at bbreeland@wlf.la.gov or 985-543-4777 or Jillian Day at jday@wlf.la.gov or 985-543-4777.
 

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All Roads on Big Lake Wildlife Management Areas Closed Due to Flooding

Release Date: 05/13/2019

May 13, 2019 - The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) has closed all roads on Big Lake Wildlife Management Area (WMA) due to flooding.
 
Once the water recedes, LDWF will inspect, repair and reopen these roads once they are determined to be safe for travel.
 
Big Lake WMA, which consists of 19,231 acres, is located in Franklin, Madison and Tensas parishes approximately 12 miles east of Gilbert. For more information on Big Lake WMA, go to http://www.wlf.louisiana.gov/wma/32646 .
 
For more information, contact Mitch McGee at mmcgee@wlf.la.gov or 318-343-4044.
 

East Calcasieu Artificial Reef Enhancement Complete in Calcasieu Lake, First of Eleven NRDA-Funded Reef Enhancements

Release Date: 05/13/2019

East Calcasieu Artificial Reef Enhancement Complete in Calcasieu Lake, First of Eleven NRDA-Funded Reef Enhancements

(May 13, 2019) - The East Calcasieu artificial reef in Calcasieu Lake has been completed. The reef site, also known as “Big Jack’s Reef”, is an existing inshore artificial reef that had material added to it, therefore increasing hard-bottom habitat at the site.

Calcasieu Lake’s water-bottom consists mostly of soft mud or clay. The crushed concrete and limestone deployed will create habitat for small fishes which draws larger predatory species. All inshore artificial reef sites are protected from oyster harvest, meaning all oysters growing within the reef permit area can serve as a broodstock and continue to assist the oyster population in Calcasieu Lake for years to come.

The East Calcasieu artificial reef site was originally created in June of 2017. LDWF, in partnership with the Coastal Conservation Association, deployed 1500 tons of crushed concrete and concrete pilings in the reef site. Oyster settlement has been observed since this original deployment, and anglers have reported successful trips to the reef. Last week LDWF, again in partnership with CCA, deployed an additional 6,000 tons of crushed concrete and limestone to the 87-acre site. Construction began Tuesday, May 7th and was completed by Sunday, May 12th.

The East Calcasieu Artificial Reef site enhancement is the first of eleven reef site projects planned across the coast of Louisiana this year. Funding for the reef enhancements came from the Deepwater Horizon (DWH) oil spill settlement which allocated funds to restore for recreational losses that occurred in Louisiana following the DWH oil spill.  

The East Calcasieu reef can be found at coordinates 29.8852, -93.2793. The nearest launch locations are Hebert’s Landing (5 nautical miles) and the Dugas Landing (9 nautical miles). For more information, including additional reef locations and maps, please visit the Louisiana Artificial Reef Program site at www.wlf.louisiana.gov/fishing/artificial-reef-program.  

 

LDWF continues to collect biological impact data as Bonne Carre spillway opens for a second time

Release Date: 05/10/2019

Parker White, with LDWF Marine Fisheries, and Jaimie Thompson, an LDWF biologist with the Wildlife Diversity Program

The Bonne Carre’ Spillway opened Friday for a historic second time this year, while the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) continued its biological monitoring of fish and wildlife resources related to the first spillway opening.
More specifically, the LDWF is cooperatively monitoring the effects of freshwater inputs from the spillway openings on Louisiana’s oyster, shrimp, and crab resources, as well as potential impacts on federally managed marine mammal and sea turtle populations.
LDWF is part of a multi-agency group monitoring the effects of freshwater introduction resulting from the first, and now second, opening of the Bonne Carre’ Spillway. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) is the lead agency charged with monitoring marine mammals and sea turtles and LDWF has assisted NOAA in this regard.
Other entities monitoring the impacts of the spillway opening include the Louisiana Department of Environmental Quality, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, the U.S. Geological Survey, Louisiana State University, and National Wildlife Federation.
 “LDWF biologists will continue to monitor our fish and wildlife resources, and extend our support efforts to NOAA as long as is needed,” said Randy Myers, LDWF Assistant Secretary for Wildlife.
Since Jan. 1 2019, there has been an increase in sea turtle and marine mammal strandings along the coast of Louisiana. The LDWF has been in constant coordination with NOAA and other partners, assessing the situation and organizing response efforts.
LDWF has been responding to strandings, performing necropsies on sea turtle and marine mammal carcasses, reporting stranding response and data collection via photo documentation and stranding response forms, and uploading all necessary information into NOAA's online database. LDWF protocols and standard operating procedures have occurred during this time and will continue as the event continues to unfold.
The true impact of the spillway opening on the local fish and wildlife populations won’t be known for months as data continues to be collected and analyzed by both state and federal agencies.
Since the first 43-day opening of the spillway ended, LDWF has been studying effects of low salinity on the oyster population in Mississippi Sound. Monitoring will continue as long as salinities remain below thresholds that threaten oyster survival.
“It is likely some oyster beds will see an impact, especially if salinities remain low and water temperatures rise,” said Patrick Banks, Assistant Secretary for Fisheries, “but we are confident that the areas will be able to rebound just as Mother Nature intended.”
 

Public Oyster Seed Ground Vessel Permit Appeals Board to Meet

Release Date: 05/10/2019

The Public Oyster Seed Ground Vessel Permit Appeals Board will meet Tuesday, May 14, 2019. The meeting will convene at 10:00 a.m. at the St. Bernard Port, Harbor, and Terminal building located at 100 Port Blvd., Chalmette, LA 70043.

  

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

1.  Call to Order

2.  Pledge of Allegiance

3.  Roll Call

4.  Approval of Agenda

5. Approval of Minutes from November 7, 2018 Meeting

6. Hearing of Deferred Renewal Permit Appeals

A. Mauricio Blanco

7. Hearing of New Renewal Permit Appeal

A. Pannagl Seafood

B. Sophin Men

8. Receive Department Response to Special Mailing of Permit Notices Request – LDWF

9. Receive Report on Public Oyster Seed Ground Vessel Permit Numbers – LDWF

10. Receive Public Comments

11. Set Next Meeting Date

12. 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, 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 or Carolina Bourque at 337-735-8726 or cbourque@wlf.la.gov.    

 

Public Oyster Seed Ground Vessel Permit Appeals Board to Meet

Release Date: 05/10/2019

The Public Oyster Seed Ground Vessel Permit Appeals Board will meet Tuesday, May 14, 2019. The meeting will convene at 10:00 a.m. at the St. Bernard Port, Harbor, and Terminal building located at 100 Port Blvd., Chalmette, LA 70043.

  

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

  1. Call to Order
  2. Pledge of Allegiance
  3. Roll Call
  4. Approval of Agenda
  5. Approval of Minutes from November 7, 2018 Meeting
  6. Hearing of Deferred Renewal Permit Appeals
    1. Mauricio Blanco
  7. Hearing of New Renewal Permit Appeal
    1. Pannagl Seafood
    2. Sophin Men
  8. Receive Department Response to Special Mailing of Permit Notices Request – LDWF
  9. Receive Report on Public Oyster Seed Ground Vessel Permit Numbers – LDWF
  10. Receive Public Comments
  11. Set Next Meeting Date
  12. 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, 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 or Carolina Bourque at 337-735-8726 or cbourque@wlf.la.gov.    

 

LDWF Announces Road Closures on Big Lake WMA

Release Date: 05/09/2019

May 8, 2019 -- The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) has closed Big Lake Road & Fina Road on Big Lake Wildlife Management Area (WMA) due to flooding effective immediately.

Road closures are deemed necessary to ensure safety and prevent road damage. Once the water recedes, LDWF will inspect, repair and reopen those roads when it is determined they are safe for travel.

Big Lake WMA, which consists of 19,231 acres, is located in Franklin, Madison and Tensas parishes approximately 12 miles east of Gilbert. For more information on Big Lake WMA, go to http://www.wlf.louisiana.gov/wma/32646 .
 
For more information, contact Mitch McGee at mmcgee@wlf.la.gov or 318-343-4044.
 

 

LDWF Announces Road Closures on Big Lake WMA

Release Date: 05/09/2019

May 8, 2019 -- The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) has closed Big Lake Road & Fina Road on Big Lake Wildlife Management Area (WMA) due to flooding effective immediately.

Road closures are deemed necessary to ensure safety and prevent road damage. Once the water recedes, LDWF will inspect, repair and reopen those roads when it is determined they are safe for travel.

Big Lake WMA, which consists of 19,231 acres, is located in Franklin, Madison and Tensas parishes approximately 12 miles east of Gilbert. For more information on Big Lake WMA, go to http://www.wlf.louisiana.gov/wma/32646 .
 
For more information, contact Mitch McGee at mmcgee@wlf.la.gov or 318-343-4044.
 

 

Oyster Task Force to Meet May 14

Release Date: 05/09/2019

Louisiana Oyster Task Force Meeting

Mitch Jurisich, Chairman

Tuesday, May 14, 2019, 1 p.m.

St. Bernard Port Harbor and Terminal

100 Port Blvd., Chalmette, LA 70043

 

I. Pledge of Allegiance

II. Roll call and introduction of guests

III. Approval of April 16, 2019 Minutes and May 14, 2019 Agenda

IV. Treasury Report

A.      LOTF Financial Report & Oyster Tag Sales

V. Committee Reports

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

B. Enforcement (Major Edward Skena)

C. Legislative (Jakov Jurisic)

D. Research (Earl Melancon)

E. Coastal Restoration (Dan Coulon)

F. Marketing (LDWF)

G. Health (Justin Gremillion)

H. Professionalism (LDWF)

I. Aquaculture (Steve Pollock)

J. Joint Task Force Working Group (Mitch Jurisich)

VI. New Business

A. To Hear an Update on the 2018-2019 Oyster Season- LDWF

B. To Hear Discussion and an Update on the Oyster Lease Moratorium Lifting NOI- OTF

C. To Hear an Update on the LFF Activities and to Consider Funding the 2020 Louisiana Seafood Summit- LA Sea Grant

D. Request for Letters of Support for Research Proposals- Earl Melancon

E. To Consider Funding for an Oyster Industry Marketing Plan- OTF

F. To Hear a Presentation on the Standardized Method used in Determining the Percentage of Non-living Material in Bedding Loads- LDWF

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/3134558515863135746

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. To receive email alerts, signup at http://www.wlf.la.gov/signup.For press inquiries please contact Rene LeBreton, 504-286-8745 or rlebreton@wlf.la.gov

The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries is committed to accommodating all reasonable special requests regarding access to our meetings. Please direct all sign language interpreting services or other accommodation needs to rlebreton@wlf.la.gov at least 72 hours prior to the meeting date.

 

LDWF Announces Bid Process for Alligator Hunting on WMAs, Refuges, and USACE Properties for 2019-2021 Harvest Seasons

Release Date: 05/08/2019

May 8, 2019 - The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) is accepting bids for alligator hunting on Wildlife Management Areas (WMAs), U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) properties and state wildlife refuges for the 2019-2021 alligator harvest seasons. Applications will be accepted until bid opening at 10 a.m. on June 21 at the LDWF Lafayette Field Office, 200 Dulles Drive, Lafayette, LA 70506.
 
Eligible alligator hunters are chosen through a bid system every three years on selected WMA/Refuge/USACE properties.
 
Bids for alligator hunting will be solicited for the following WMA/Refuge/USACE properties: Grassy Lake, Spring Bayou, and Pomme de Terre (Avoyelles Parish), Attakapas (Iberia, St. Martin and St. Mary parishes), Sherburne - USACE lands (Iberville, Pointe Coupee and St. Martin parishes), Dewey W. Wills (La Salle and Catahoula parishes), Manchac (St. John Parish), Pearl River - North of Interstate 10,  Pearl River - Between Interstate 10 and U.S. Hwy 90 and Pearl River - South of U.S. Hwy 90 (St. Tammany Parish), Joyce (Tangipahoa and Livingston parishes), Maurepas Swamp (St. John, St. James, Ascension, Livingston and St. Charles parishes), Indian Bayou - USACE property (St. Landry and St. Martin parishes), Atchafalaya Delta (St. Mary Parish), Pointe-aux-Chenes (Lafourche and Terrebonne parishes), Salvador (St. Charles Parish), Pass-a-Loutre (Plaquemines Parish) and St. Tammany Refuge (St. Tammany Parish).

A total of 33 alligator hunting opportunities are available for bid. The number of alligator tags that will be issued varies depending on the area awarded. For specific details on the number of alligator hunter opportunities and tags available by area, please see the bid application notification. 
 
Interested participants may review and print out the bid application notification and form from LDWF’s website at www.wlf.louisiana.gov/wildlife/alligator-hunting or request by phone at the phone numbers below or request in writing from Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries, Attn: Leslie Campbell, 2019-2021 WMA Alligator Harvest Bids, P.O. Box 62250, Lafayette, LA  70596.
 
 
Applicants must meet the following criteria in order to submit a bid:
1)    Must be a Louisiana resident at least 18 years of age.
2)    Must have previous alligator hunting experience in Louisiana.
3)    Must be able to provide essential equipment for alligator hunting on the WMA/Refuge/USACE property on which they are bidding.
4)    Must be able to report to the WMA/Refuge/USACE property each morning until alligator tag quota is completed.
5)    Must follow specific instructions issued by LDWF personnel.
6)    Must maintain required records.
7)    Must be able to successfully pass a criminal background check. All applicants will be screened for past wildlife and criminal violations. Applicants with felony convictions, that pled guilty to a felony or that have pled guilty, paid a fine for, negotiated/agreed to a pretrial intervention (PTI)/diversion for or been convicted of Class Two or above wildlife, WMA/Refuge/USACE or littering violations within the last five years, as determined by the LDWF enforcement division, shall be disqualified.
 
For more information, please call the appropriate LDWF office (Lafayette 337-735-8667, Pineville 318-487-5885, Hammond 985-543-4777, or send e-mail to LAalligatorprogram@wlf.la.gov.
 

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