Bodcau

Acreage

33,766

Contact

jjohnson@wlf.la.gov; 318-371-3050; 9961 Hwy 80, Minden, LA 71055

Parish

Bossier, Webster

Owner/manager

Owned by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers; managed by LDWF through long-term licensing agreements

Description

Bodcau WMA gets its name from Bodcau Bayou, the major bayou that bisects it from its northernmost point at the Arkansas-Louisiana state line to its southernmost tip nearly 30 miles to the south. The area is long and narrow with an average width of 1-1/2 miles. Ivan Lake is on Bodcau WMA, and there is also a manmade dam and seasonal flood reservoir which were built to control downstream flooding.

Bodcau WMA contains a wide range of wildlife habitat ranging from cypress swamps to upland pine and hardwood forests interspersed with grasslands and open fields. Many species of grasses and forbs typically found in states west of Louisiana can be found growing in the grassland areas. There are numerous seasonally flooded sloughs, beaver ponds, and large areas of flatland, bottomland, hardwood forests. The bottomland forest rapidly merges with the upland forest on a series of ridges that extend into the bottomland area.

The main bottomland tree species include bald cypress and water, overcup, willow, and cow oaks. Shortleaf and loblolly pine; white, red, and cherrybark oaks; sweetgum; and elm trees dominate upland forests. Understory species in the bottomland area include poison ivy, honeysuckle, rattan, buttonbush, and swamp privet. Upland understory species include blackberry, honeysuckle, poison ivy, beautyberry, and sawbriar.

LDWF, in conjunction with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, manages and develops habitat on Bodcau WMA through prescribed burning, fallow disking, supplemental food plantings, water level manipulation, and timber harvest. These practices help to provide quality habitat for game and non-game species.

Activities and Amenities

Hunting and trapping: Available game species include white-tailed deer (both archery and modern firearms), squirrel, rabbit, dove, quail, and all other species of small game. The deer herd is considered healthy. Waterfowl hunting is available in the 1,600 acre greentree reservoir and in the numerous sloughs and backwater flooded areas. Turkey hunting is also allowed during a short spring gobbler season. There are youth-only deer, squirrel, and turkey seasons. See regulations for details.

Shooting range: There is a free, public shooting range with a rifle range with targets from 25 to 200 yards, a pistol range with 25-yard targets, and a shotgun station. The range is supervised by an approved range officer. Click here for more information, email tbuffington@wlf.la.gov, or call 318-326-3225.

Fishing and boating: Fishing and small boating are available on Ivan Lake. Bass and bream fishing are excellent on Bodcau Bayou and its overflow; crawfish are also abundant during certain years. See regulations for details.

Birding and wildlife viewing: Great blue herons, several species of hawks, and barred, horned and screech owls are common on Bodcau WMA. Yellow, black and white, yellow-throated, magnolia, prairie, and yellow-rumped warblers are regularly seen on the area. Numerous species of reptiles, amphibians, and insects are common as well.

Camping: Camping is available at the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers improved camping area located on the south end of Bodcau WMA and at several primitive camping areas.

Directions

Bodcau WMA is located approximately 17 miles northeast of Bossier City. Travel north on LA Hwy 157 from I-20 at Haughton to Bellevue, then follow the signs to Bodcau WMA. ATVs and UTVs are permitted on a seasonal basis (September 1 through the end of February) on numerous marked trails on the WMA. A small number of these trails are open year-round for access to additional fishing locations.