LDWF News

LDWF News Release

LDWF Accepting Applications Beginning May 17 for Waterfowl Group Hunts at White Lake WCA for 2019-20 Hunting Season

Release Date: 05/16/2019

May 16, 2019 - The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) will accept applications beginning Friday (May 17) until June 25 for waterfowl group hunts for up to 12 hunters per group at White Lake Wetlands Conservation Area (WCA). 
 
The cost of the 2019-20 waterfowl season hunts will be $30,000 for each group and the application form is available on the LDWF website at http://www.wlf.louisiana.gov/refuge/lottery-applications . A completed application form and $2,500 deposit must be submitted to LDWF by the close of business June 25.
 
Interested groups must select one two-day group hunt per application. When selecting dates from those offered (example: Nov. 9-10), it is understood that arrival will be the afternoon before (example: Nov. 8). The two consecutive days of hunting do not include the arrival day, which will be the day before from 3-5 p.m.
 
LDWF will select one application by random lottery drawing for each hunt offered.  Applicants must be at least 18 years old and must submit a separate application for each two-day group hunt they wish to reserve. Applicants can apply for as many as three separate two-day hunts. If multiple applications are submitted, each will require a separate $2,500 deposit.
 
Applications must be accompanied by a bank draft, money order or other liquid instrument made payable to Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries in the amount of $2,500. If the application is selected, the deposit is non-refundable. The applicant will be notified by mail or e-mail, and will be required to submit the final payment of $27,500 no later than Oct. 15.
 
PLEASE NOTE: Any unsold hunts after the application deadline will be sold on a first-come first-serve basis. Please contact Wayne Sweeney at 337-536-9400 ext. # 1 or email wsweeney@wlf.la.gov  to find out what hunting dates may still be available. A hunt will be considered sold once a deposit and application is received in the LDWF Baton Rouge office at the address referenced in the application.
 
The fee covers up to 12 hunters and includes the following: Transportation to and from the airport (Jennings, Lake Charles or Lafayette), all food and beverages, two-night stay at the White Lake Lodge, professional hunting and fishing guides, hunting and fishing licenses, steel shot shotgun shells for waterfowl hunts and steel shot for skeet range, the use of shotguns and fishing gear, bird and fish cleaning and packaging.
 
On the arrival day, hunters will watch a safety film and then be issued hunting and fishing licenses. If time allows, the group will shoot skeet in the late afternoon hours.  Day two starts with a morning waterfowl hunt from 6-9:30 a.m. After the hunt, lunch will be served and that afternoon the group can fish or shoot clay targets on the skeet range or sporting clays course. On day three, a morning waterfowl hunt is scheduled from 6-9:30 a.m. and checkout is no later than noon, follwing lunch.
 
Applications must be mailed or delivered to:
 
 
Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries
Attention: White Lake Group Hunt
2000 Quail Drive, Room 418
Baton Rouge, LA   70808
 
For more information on White Lake WCA waterfowl group hunts, contact Wayne Sweeney at 337-536-9400, ext. 1, or wsweeney@wlf.la.gov .
 

LDWF Announces 2019 Alligator Lottery for WMAs, USACE Property and Public Lakes

Release Date: 05/16/2019

May 16, 2019 – The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) will conduct alligator lottery harvests on 19 LDWF Wildlife Management Areas (WMAs), 25 public lakes and one U.S. Army Corp of Engineers (USACE) property Aug. 28-Oct. 3, 2019. Applications are now available and are due by July 5.
 
Interested participants may print out an application form from LDWF’s website at www.wlf.louisiana.gov/hunting/lottery-hunts or request an application by phone at 225-765-2346.
 
Applications and a non-refundable fee of $5 must be submitted to the address indicated on the application and be postmarked by July 5.  Applicants must be legal Louisiana residents and 16 years of age or older. All successful applicants will be required to purchase an alligator hunting license ($25), and will also be required to submit payment of $40 for each alligator tag allocated to the chosen location.
 
To assist applicants in selecting specific WMAs/public lakes, LDWF has posted the percentage of lottery alligator harvest applicants selected in 2018 by WMA or public lake as well as a map showing the general location of each area on its website at www.wlf.louisiana.gov/lottery-alligator-harvest-program.
 
For more information concerning lottery alligator harvests on LDWF WMAs or public lakes, contact the appropriate LDWF Field Office or email LAalligatorprogram@wlf.la.gov.
 

Louisiana Native Plant Garden at LDWF Baton Rouge Headquarters a Great Way to Experience Native Flora

Release Date: 05/14/2019

Louisiana Native Plant Garden
Louisiana Native Plant Garden at LDWF Headquarters in Baton Rouge.
Louisiana Native Plant Garden at LDWF Headquarters in Baton Rouge.

May 14, 2019 – Visitors to the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) headquarters building in Baton Rouge have a unique opportunity to enjoy the state’s native plants right on the grounds of the facility. LDWF developed the Louisiana Native Plant Garden at campus headquarters and it’s free for the public to enjoy.
 
The Garden contains more than 160 native plant species grouped into smaller gardens to resemble natural Louisiana habitats providing resources for wildlife in the urban landscape. The Garden is about a quarter-acre, making it one of the largest and most diverse native plant gardens in the state. Two interpretive stations and 80 plant label signs have been installed in the Garden to enhance visitors’ experiences.
 
“This is a great time to visit, as the Garden is undergoing a redesign to maximize aesthetics while maintaining a natural appeal in each garden theme,’’ LDWF Botanist Brian Early said. “In addition to a variety of native plants in bloom, those visiting will be able to see the transition between the various garden styles, wild to manicured, allowing visitors to decide which best fits their own landscape.’’
 
Developed in 2014, the Garden continues to evolve as staff make improvements, implementing new gardening and design techniques. It’s also a chance to get some ideas for your yard. Using native plants in Louisiana yards and neighborhoods provides many benefits to people, wildlife and the environment.
 
The Garden was recently selected as one of five locations to be visited on the Backyard Habitat Garden Tour hosted by the LSU Hilltop Arboretum. Early and volunteers were present at the Garden to lead tours, demonstrate gardening techniques, discuss applied design theory and share lessons learned with visitors. LDWF hosted 200 visitors during this event.
 
Located in front of the headquarters building, the public is invited to visit the LDWF Louisiana Native Plant Garden to learn about the importance of native plants and celebrate our state’s natural beauty. The LDWF hopes visitors will take pride in Louisiana by adding native plants to their landscapes to create a little wildlife habitat of their own.
 
 

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.
 

 

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