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Authorities Locate Missing Hunter

Release Date: 11/13/2012

Nov. 13, 2012 -- Search and rescue personnel located a missing hunter alive at 12:45 p.m. today, Nov. 13, on the bank of Grand Lake in St. Bernard Parish.

Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries Enforcement Division agents, St. Bernard Parish Sheriff’s Office deputies and the U.S. Coast Guard found Daniel Madere, 25, of Metairie, after searching for him most of the morning.

According to Madere and his hunting partners, they were crossing Grand Lake on their way to their duck blinds at 5:15 a.m.  Madere’s duck blind partner noticed that Madere was not at the blind when he was supposed to be there and doubled back to see if he was having trouble.  After a brief search of the area, Madere’s duck blind partner called authorities to assist in the search.

Madere’s 16 foot flat bottom boat sank in Grand Lake in rough water.  Madere was wearing a personal flotation device (PFD) and was able to grab another PFD to hold as he made his way to the bank.

Search and rescue personnel were able to get dry clothes for Madere and transported him back to the launch near Delacroix where a medical staff was waiting to check his condition.

For more information, contact Adam Einck at 225-765-2465 or aeinck@wlf.la.gov.

SPECIAL eNEWS ANNOUNCEMENT: Environmental Education Symposium – Registration NOW OPEN!

Louisiana Environmental Education Symposium - REGISTRATION IS NOW OPEN!

On February 22-23, 2013, the Louisiana Environmental Education Commission and the Louisiana Environmental Education Association will host the 16thAnnual Louisiana Environmental Education Symposium “Our Environment…Our Future”at the Baton Rouge Marriott in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. The theme for this upcoming conference will be “Build a Sustainable Future”! After all, isn’t that what we are really about?!

Join us for exciting workshops, concurrent sessions, and exhibits for the environmental educator! If you are a K-12 teacher or informal educator, you will want to attend this fun, education-packed, professional development event! Go home Energized and Educated in the latest EE concepts!

Early Bird Registration closes on January 22, 2013.
Lodging assistance is available.
Brochure with registration form is attached. All forms and related information can also be found on our website at www.wlf.louisiana.gov/eec.

Visit the LEEC table (#80) at the LATM/LSTA Conference, November 12-14!


SHORT COURSE INFORMATION
The following optional Short Course sessions are being offered on Friday, February 22, 2013,in conjunction with the 2013 conference. Short Course participants must also register for the Environmental Education Symposium and pay conference registration fees, in addition to a nominal Short Course fee. Workshops will be held in the immediate Baton Rouge area, to be announced.

Preregistration is required.                          Space is limited!               Participants will be notified via e-mail.

1. “Give a Whoop!” Whooping Crane     WORKSHOP
Facilitators: Heather Egger, University of New Orleans 
                      Amy LeGaux, Audubon Nature Institute
                      Sue Ellen Lyons, Holy Cross High School
                      Sara Zimorski, LDWF Whooping Crane Biologist
                      Carrie Salyers, LDWF Endangered Species Education Outreach Biologist
Grade Level:  5-12                                       Time:  8:00 AM–3:30 PM
Fee:  $10; lunch provided
Participants will learnabout the complexities and challenges of the whooping crane reintroduction program, receive how-to demonstrations on classroom lesson activities, and engage in field work related to animal tracking using GPS units. Workshop participants will receive a $75 stipend, a handheld GPS unit for classroom use, a lesson series of tenengaging, GLE-aligned lessons covering topics such as taxonomy, bird reproduction, ecosystems, adaptation, and endangered species,and other related items. This workshop is sponsored by: CHEVRON and Louisiana Wildlife & Fisheries Foundation.

2. Innovative Designs & Practices Paving the Way to Sustainable Success Stores TOUR
Facilitators:  Edward Cazayoux, Ph.D., Architect specializing in climate responsive architecture
                       Charles Allen, Ph.D., Author of “Edible Plants of the Gulf South”
                       Katry Martin, Civil Engineer
                       Trish Ransom, Artist specializing in repurposing
Grade Level:  General                                                Time:  8:00 AM–4:30 PM
Fee:  $10; lunch & transportation provided
Travel to the St. Landry Parish Visitor Information Center, which serves as an introduction to sustainable architecture and living closer to the land. Completed in 2011, you’ll hear first hand from architects, artists, and native plant experts on the utilization of renewable energy sources, routing of rainwater, recycling, and demonstration of local ecosystems. Then you will also see how trash is literally being turned into treasure – bio compressed natural gas (CNG) to be exact, at the St. Landry Parish Landfill. This is one of only two such systems in the entire country! The resulting BioCNG is used to fuel vehicles operated by our Sheriff’s Department. Then enjoy a mini-workshop creating art out of debris!

3. Conservation Education Featuring WET, WILD, & Learning Tree WORKSHOP
Facilitator:  Wade Dubea, State Forester
                     Whitney Wallace, INE Program Director
Grade Level:  General                                Time:  8:00 AM–3:30 PM
Fee:  $10; lunch provided                                        
Here is an opportunity to participate in a single workshop and gain hands-on experience and resources from THREE exceptional programs. Workshop attendees will participate in selected activities from each program featuring water quality, wildlife and forestry. Activities are available for all grade levels, subject areas, and learning styles. Upon completion of the workshop, activity guides and resource materials will be provided to participants. Come share, learn, and experience nature as we promote teaching “how to think and not what to think” about our environment.

4. Rainwater Harvesting – Water Conservation and Water Quality WORKSHOP
Facilitator:  Dotty Woodson, Extension Program Specialist-Water Resources, Texas A&M AgriLife
Grade Level:  General                                Time:  8:00 AM–3:30 PM
Fee:  $10; lunch provided                                        
Come learn about the ins and outs of water conservation! And make your own rain barrel to take back to your classroom! Rainwater harvesting makes use of a valuable resource, provides a water source when groundwater or surface waters are unacceptable or unavailable, can augment existing water supplies, reduces the load into stormwater drains, reduces non-point source pollution, reduces the summer water peak demand, delays expansion of existing water treatment plants, and reduces water bills. A 2,000 square foot building can collect 1200 gallons in a 1 inch rain! Limited to 15 participants, each who will make a working rain barrel. Participants need to be able to transport their rain barrel back home!

5. Native, Exotic, Invasive…Oh My! WORKSHOP
Facilitator:  Dianne Lindstedt, Marine Education Coordinator, Louisiana Sea Grant
Grade Level:  5-8                                          Time:  8:00 AM–3:30 PM
Fee: $10; lunch provided
Engage your students in a real ecological problem through aquatic invasive species. Learn about their ecological and economic impacts, how they spread, and what makes them tick. Practice activities that can be used in your classroom and consider developing a stewardship project with your students.


Venise Ortego, Environmental Education Coordinator, 337-948-0255, vortego@wlf.la.gov
Juliet Raffray, Environmental Education Assistant Coordinator, 225-765-0124, jraffray@wlf.la.gov
Louisiana Department of Wildlife & Fisheries – www.wlf.louisiana.gov/eec

Search and Rescue Personnel Locate Missing Hunter

Release Date: 11/06/2012

Nov. 6, 2012 -- Search and rescue authorities found a missing hunter alive on the Sabine Island Wildlife Management Area (WMA) shortly after Midnight on Nov. 6.

Authorities found Virgil Conway, 74, of Vinton, at 12:15 a.m. this morning on the WMA after he became disoriented and could not find his way back to his boat.

Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) Enforcement Division agents were notified at 6:45 p.m. on Nov. 5 about an overdue hunter on the WMA.  LDWF agents immediately coordinated a search effort with the Calcasieu Parish Sheriff’s Office, Ward 7 Fire Department and public volunteers who knew Conway and where he usually hunted.

Conway left to go hunting at 5 a.m. on Nov. 5, which was his last contact with family.  He launched his aluminum flat bottom boat to go to one of his familiar hunting spots on the Sabine Island WMA.  After hunting, Conway could not find his way back to his boat and was lost.  His family then contacted authorities when he did not arrive home at his usual time.

Authorities located his boat at 7:30 p.m. and almost five hours later found Conway at least a mile away from where his boat was found.  After Conway could not find his way back to his boat, he found an area that he could stay until help arrived.  He only had three shotgun shells and shot two of them into the air after dark in an effort to alert searchers of his location.

For more information, contact Adam Einck at aeinck@wlf.la.gov or 225-765-2465.

Special Announcement: EPA Region 6 School Sustainability Grant Awards Announcement

EPA Region 6 School Sustainability Grant Awards Announcement

The Louisiana Environmental Education Commission would like to sincerely thank all who applied for our 2012-2013 School Sustainability Grants Program. Your creative talents and willingness to incorporate sustainability initiatives in your schools was very evident! We would also like to thank EPA Region 6 for providing the funding for this project.

Congratulations to the following winners:

Project Leader

School

State

Award Amount

Project Title

Nancy Baird

Archbishop Hannan High School

LA

$ 5,000.00

Schoolyard Habitat

George "Brad" Beatty

Oakland Heights Elementary

AR

$5,000.00

Sustainability in the Air

Paul Conover

Ridge Elementary School

LA

$2,000.00

Sustainable Student Garden

Lynn Danjean

Creekside Junior High

LA

$4,496.00

Growing in the 21st Century

Jeanell Sullivan

St. Scholastica Academy

LA

$5,000.00

Sustainable Vegetable Garden

Jennifer Thomas

Bale Elementary

AR

$2,486.00

Climate Change: Breathe Better, Live Better, Look Better

We will be offering another grant round very similar to this one in January 2013 for implementation in the 2013-2014 school year.

WEEKLY eNEWS: Conferences, Contests, Events, Grants, Resources, Webinars/Workshops

A Compilation of Environmental Education News from Across Louisiana

CONFERENCES

National Marine Educators Association Conference 2013
Spring Hill College Campus, Mobile, AL
EXHIBITOR INVITATION July 22 – July 24, 2013
Classroom and informal educators, researchers, resource managers, marine scientists and ocean enthusiasts from across the nation and around the world gather each summer at the NMEA conference. The conference is a place for attendees to make professional connections, share innovative ideas, and learn about new resources, tools and technologies for use in classrooms, laboratories, and education programs. Accepting applications from January 7, 2013 to March 15, 2013! The fee for an accepted exhibitor is $250 plus one full conference registration. Exhibit space is limited, so act fast! Application forms must be received by March 15, 2013. To register as an exhibitor for the NMEA 2013 Conference, submit the Exhibitor Application Form. It can be found online at www.nmeaweb.org. Return forms to sserra@disl.org, by fax Attn: Stephanie Serra (251) 861-4646, or by mail: Stephanie Serra NMEA Exhibits, Dauphin Island Sea Lab, 101 Bienville Blvd, Dauphin Island, AL 36695.

Register for the Bays and Bayous Symposium
This year’s theme is “Finding a Common Currency: Natural Resource Economics, Ecology and Culture.” More than 120 oral presentation and 60 poster presentations are scheduled for the symposium. Presenters and their topics can be previewed on the agenda link at http://masgc.org/bb2012. Click on concurrent sessions or poster presentations to see details. Come and see what’s new in the Gulf and network with others who are interested in coastal issues. Register here: http://masgc.org/page.asp?id=773.

 

CONTESTS

Shell Science Lab Challenge (Deadline: November 12)
The Shell Science Lab Challenge gives science lab teachers an opportunity to share exemplary approach for a chance to win a school science lab makeover support package valued at $20,000; over $93,000 in lab makeover prizes to be awarded this year to 18 schools. Learn more.

PASCO STEM Educator Award (Deadline: November 30)
Teachers can win $2000.00 in PASCO products, a $1000.00 stipend, and a trip to the NSTA National conference in April 2013. http://www.pasco.com/resources/pasco-stem-educator-awards/index.cfm.

River of Words Art and Poetry Contest (Deadline: December 1)
River of Words is an international environmental poetry and art project open to youth ages 5-19, designed to nurture respect and understanding of the natural world. The deadline for entries from the U.S. is December 1, 2012; for international entries, February 1, 2013. http://www.stmarys-ca.edu/center-for-environmental-literacy/art-poetry-contest

P3 Design Competition (Deadline: December 12)
The EPA is seeking applications proposing to research, develop, and design solutions to real world challenges involving the overall sustainability of human society. The P3 Awards: A National Student Design Competition for Sustainability Focusing on People, Prosperity and the Planet competition highlights the use of scientific principles in creating innovative projects focused on sustainability. http://epa.gov/ncer/rfa/2013/2013_p3.html

 

EVENTS

Louisiana Envirothon: Save the Date – March 9, 2013
The Louisiana Envirothon is an environmental problem-solving competition for students in grades 6-12.  Teams train and compete by demonstrating their knowledge of environmental science and natural resource management.  The competition focuses on five natural resource areas:  soils and land use, aquatic resources, forestry, wildlife, and a current environmental issue.  Please see the attached flyer for more information on the 2013 Louisiana Envirothon. More information can also be found at: www.deq.louisiana.gov/Envirothon.
 

GRANTS

Captain Planet Foundation Grants (Deadline: January 15)
The Captain Planet Foundation funds and supports hands-on environmental projects for children and youths ages 6–18.  Its objective is to encourage innovative programs that empower children and youth around the world to work individually and collectively to solve environmental problems in their neighborhoods and communities. Grant amounts range from $250 to $2,500. Please visit: http://captainplanetfoundation.org/apply-for-grants/

SeaWorld & Busch Gardens Conservation Fund (Deadline: December 1)
The SeaWorld & Busch Gardens Conservation Fund supports projects in species research, habitat protection, animal rescue and rehabilitation, and conservation education. http://www.swbg-conservationfund.org/grantInfoA.htm

Walmart Store and Sam's Club Local Giving Programs (Deadline: December 1)
The Walmart Foundation supports charitable organizations through its Walmart Store and Sam’s Club Giving Programs. Eligible organizations include K-12 public schools/districts, charter schools, community/junior colleges, and others. http://foundation.walmart.com/apply-for-grants/local-giving

 

RESOURCES

Earth Science Searchable Online Classroom Activities
Ever wish you could go online to search for a classroom activity tailor-made to match the Earth Visit the Earth Science Week Classroom Activities page for more than 120 free learning activities. Activities now are organized and searchable by various criteria, including specific Earth science topics. To find the perfect activity for your lesson, just click on “Search Classroom Activities?” You can search by grade level and science education standard. Maybe most useful, you also can search among 24 categories of Earth science topics, from energy and environmental impacts to plate tectonics and weathering. This updated, database-driven resource is ideal not only for supplementing a prepared curriculum, but also for generating activities that address in-the-news events such as fossil discoveries and volcanic eruptions. See the Classroom Activities page at http://www.earthsciweek.org/forteachers/classroomactivities.html.

Many Strong Voices
The goal of Many Strong Voices is to promote the well-being, security, and sustainability of coastal communities in the Arctic and Small Island Developing States by bringing these regions together to take action on climate change mitigation and adaptation, and to tell their stories to the world. Check out the resources pages with links to podcasts, video, and more; read portraits of resilience; and access the free peer-reviewed journal articles, including Ecosystem-Based Adaptation to Climate Change in Caribbean Small Island Developing States: Integrating Local and External Knowledge. http://www.manystrongvoices.org/

Marine Biology Coloring Book
The Marine Biology Coloring Book can serve as a useful resource and guide through hand-drawn illustrations and updated text. The process of coloring can focus attention and leave a visual imprint on memory. The latest edition includes ocean currents and global weather, the deep-sea realm, and more. Those interested can preview pages from the book before purchase. http://www.harpercollins.com/browseinside/index.aspx?isbn13=9780062737182

Marine Science Graduate Research Blog
Students with an interest in marine science and research should check out the Northeastern University Marine Science Center's graduate student blog. It's easy to scroll through and offers a look into the lives of grad students in the field and lab. http://cosresearch.wordpress.com/

Evolution Video
This is a great comprehensive explanation of scientific theory and evolution only 10 minutes in length.  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XdddbYILel0&feature=youtube_gdata_player

New Watershed Curriculum Available for the Pascagoula River
A new online curriculum entitled “Connecting Students to the Pascagoula River” developed by the grant partnership composed of representatives from NOAA, The MDMR Grand Bay NERR, The Land Trust for the Mississippi Coastal Plain, Bayou Town Productions, The University of Southern Mississippi, The MDEQ and The Pascagoula River Audubon Center, is designed to provide place-based watershed information to teachers throughout our region who teach upper elementary and middle school students. The curriculum can be found online at: http://www.ltmcp.org/teacher-resources/pascagoula-river-watershed/and www.grandbaynerr.org

 

WEBINARS/WORKSHOPS

Green Strides Webinar Series Sessions by USDA, NOAA, DOI and NASA Geared Toward Educators
Session presenters are eager to connect schools with their many existing free resources and programs. Upcoming sessions focus on environmental education/STEM topics for educators as well as several facilities and health topics, which may appeal more to administrators and facilities managers at state, district, and school levels.
Nov. 7, 2012, 2-3 p.m. Integrated School Health Tools for Districts (EPA)
Nov. 14, 2012, 2-3 p.m. Train Like an Astronaut (NASA)
Nov. 28, 2012, 2-3 p.m. Hands on the Land (DOI)


Find out about wetland outreach activities including symposiums, conferences, meetings, educational opportunities, volunteer opportunities, and related support material at the Louisiana Unified Coastal Community Calendar at http://lacoast.gov/calendar/

Louisiana Environmental Education Commission (LEEC) – www.wlf.la.gov/eec
Venise Ortego, Coordinator, 337-948-0255, vortego@wlf.la.gov
Juliet Raffray, Assistant Coordinator, 225-765-0124, jraffray@wlf.la.gov

Oyster Season To Close in Small Portion of Public Grounds

Release Date: 10/31/2012

 

Oct. 31, 2012 – Today the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries announced oyster season will close this Saturday, November 3, at one-half hour after sunset in the Lake Chien and Lake Felicity Public Oyster Seed Grounds in Terrebonne Parish.  In addition, the harvest of seed oysters for bedding purposes will close in the Hackberry Bay Public Oyster Seed Reservation (POSR), located in Jefferson and Lafourche parishes, at one half hour after sunset on Saturday, November 3.  Hackberry Bay remains open for sacking purposes.

These small public oyster seed grounds historically hold a very limited oyster supply and harvest pressure during the 2012 oyster season depleted the resource.  Protection of the remaining oyster resource is in the long-term best interest of oyster conservation in these public seed grounds.

Public notice of any opening, delay, or closure of a season will be provided at least 72 hours prior to such action, unless such closure is ordered by the Louisiana Department of Health and Hospitals for public health concerns.

The 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, and on Facebook at www.facebook.com/ldwffb, or follow us on Twitter @LDWF.

For press inquiries please contact Laura Wooderson at lwooderson@wlf.la.gov or (504) 430-2623

MEDIA ADVISORY: State and Saints to Announce Partnership Making Louisiana Seafood Official Seafood of the Mercedes-Benz Superdome

Release Date: 10/31/2012

 

Oct. 31, 2012 – Prior to the big Monday Night Football game on November 5, where the New Orleans Saints will take on the Philadelphia Eagles, the Saints will announce a partnership with the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) and the Louisiana Seafood Promotion and Marketing Board (LSPMB).

WHEN:  Monday, November 5, 4:30 p.m.

WHAT:  Announcement of state partnership

WHERE:  Mercedes-Benz Superdome, Bienville Room A

WHO:  Saints Representative, LDWF Assistant Secretary Randy Pausina, LSPMB Executive Director Ewell Smith, LSPMB Chairman Harlon Pierce, Chef Tenney Flynn of GW Fins, Seafood Industry Representatives

The state will also showcase and discuss the new Louisiana Seafood Certification Program, making Louisiana the ONLY Gulf State that can guarantee the origin of its seafood is the Gulf of Mexico.

The Saints and the state will also announce the partnership they have formed with the Saints to make the superdome the first football arena in the nation to carry only domestic Louisiana seafood.

In order to attend this press conference you MUST RSVP to this email, so that your name can be included on the appropriate lists.

RSVP to Laura Wooderson at lwooderson@wlf.la.gov or Ashley Roth at Ashley@louisianaseafood.com.

The 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, and on Facebook at www.facebook.com/ldwffb, or follow us on Twitter @LDWF.

Former Chauvin Resident Arrested for Outstanding Warrants and Possession of Firearm by a Convicted Felon

Release Date: 10/30/2012

Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries Enforcement Division agents arrested a man for allegedly possessing a firearm by a convicted felon and migratory game bird violations on Oct. 27 in Terrebonne Parish.

Agents arrested Christopher Verdin, 35, of Georgia who recently moved from Chauvin, for possessing a 12 gauge shotgun by a convicted felon.  Verdin was convicted of distributing cocaine in 2006. 

Agents received a complaint from the public about Verdin duck hunting in the Chauvin area.  Agents arrived on the scene at 7 a.m. on Oct. 27 and observed Verdin hunting ducks.  At 8:30 a.m. agents made contact with Verdin and found him in possession of one mottled duck, one teal and four ibis.

Agents cited Verdin for hunting ducks during a closed season, taking ibis for which there is no season, violating the non-toxic shot requirement, field possession of migratory game birds (MGBs), harvesting MGBs during a closed season, hunting MGBs without the required harvest information program (HIP) certification, hunting MGBs with an unplugged shotgun, hunting without a basic hunting license and hunting MGBs without state and federal duck stamps.

Possession of a firearm by a convicted felon carries a $1,000 to $5,000 fine and 10 to 20 years in jail.  Hunting without a basic license brings a $50 fine and up to 15 days in jail.  For the remaining eight charges, Verdin faces a $400 to $950 fine and up to 120 days in jail for each charge. 

During the background check, agents learned that Verdin had three outstanding warrants in Terrebonne Parish for back child support and traffic violations.  Agents booked him into the Terrebonne Parish jail.

Agents participating in the case are Lt. Joseph Arnaud, Sgt. Bryan Marie and Senior Agent Louis Burnett.

For more information, contact Adam Einck at 225-765-2465 or aeinck@wlf.la.gov.

Successful Search and Rescue Mission Results in Finding Two Overdue Boaters

Release Date: 10/27/2012

Search and rescue authorities found two missing boaters alive on Grand Lake this morning, Oct. 27 after a 12 hour search.

Tyler Smith, 24, of Iota, and Gus Atkinson, 28, of Gueydan, were found by search and rescue personnel at 9 a.m. this morning at Cypress Island in the northern section of Grand Lake.

Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) Enforcement Division agents were notified at 9 p.m. on Oct. 26 about two overdue boaters in the Grand Lake and Lake Arthur areas.  LDWF agents immediately coordinated a search effort throughout the night with the U.S. Coast Guard, Cameron Parish Sheriff’s Office and the Vermilion Parish Sheriff’s Office.

Smith and Atkinson launched their 14 foot aluminum flat bottom boat from the Hwy. 14 boat launch on Lake Arthur.  By 1:30 p.m. they were fishing at the “Catfish Locks” on Grand Lake.  At 5 p.m. family members notified the two fishermen of a storm kicking up in the area. 

The men started to make their way back to the Hwy. 14 launch, but ran into heavy winds and waves that swamped their boat.  They were able to walk their boat to the shore area and bail out the water and get back underway.  However, shortly thereafter the 25 horsepower motor quit working and they were unable to get it started again.  The men lost communications and decided to drag the boat to the shore area at Cypress Island and wait until help arrived.  Family members notified authorities at 9 p.m. who searched until they found them this morning at 9 a.m.

“These men did a lot of right things to survive this ordeal.  The most important thing they did was that they had a float plan by notifying family beforehand where they would be fishing and the family knew about what time they should be back,” said Capt. Robert Buatt, who coordinated the search.  “This float plan allowed the family to make a decision early on that they were missing and needed help.  The men also were able to get the boat to an area that was less turbulent and safe once they knew they were not going to make it back to the launch.”

LDWF will be the lead investigative agency for this boating incident.

For more information, contact Adam Einck at aeinck@wlf.la.gov or 225-765-2465.

Additional Public Oyster Areas Set to Open October 29

Release Date: 10/25/2012

Oyster Area 10/29/12

Oct. 25, 2012 - The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) reminds the public the 2012/2013 oyster season on the majority of public oyster seed grounds is set to begin Monday, October 29, 2012.  The opening date of the oyster season was determined by the Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries Commission at its August 2012 meeting.   

Two public oyster areas, the Little Lake Public Oyster Seed Grounds and the Vermilion/East and West Cote Blanche/Atchafalaya Bay Public Oyster Seed Grounds, were previously opened on September 5, 2012 and commercial oyster harvest continues to be documented from those areas. 

The area of the public grounds east of the Mississippi River and south of the Mississippi River Gulf Outlet, are a “sacking only” area for the 2012/2013 season and no seed oyster harvest is allowed.

The oyster season in the west cove portion of the Calcasieu Lake Public Oyster Area (DHH harvest area 30) shall open at one-half hour before sunrise on Thursday, November 1, 2012.  The sack limit during this time period is set at 10 sacks per person, per vessel, per day.

The areas remaining closed for the 2012/2013 oyster season include the Public Oyster Seed Reservations in Bay Gardene and Sister Lake, the 2011 cultch plants in Mississippi Sound and California Bay within the coordinates listed below, and the 2012 cultch plants in Hackberry Bay, South Black Bay (Bay Crab), and Lake Fortuna within the coordinates listed below. 

 

Mississippi Sound (2011) – St. Bernard Parish

A.  30 degrees 07 minutes 17.56 seconds N

      89 degrees 27 minutes 52.39 seconds W

B.  30 degrees 07 minutes 26.94 seconds N

      89 degrees 27 minutes 36.20 seconds W

C.  30 degrees 07 minutes 07.11 seconds N

       89 degrees 26 minutes 45.48 seconds W

D.  30 degrees 06 minutes 40.93 seconds N

      89 degrees 27 minutes 14.09 seconds W

 

California Bay (2011) – Plaquemines Parish

A.  29 degrees 30 minutes 40.42 seconds N

      89 degrees 34 minutes 03.19 seconds W

B.  29 degrees 30 minutes 27.18 seconds N

      89 degrees 33 minutes 21.85 seconds W

C.  29 degrees 29 minutes 54.99 seconds N

      89 degrees 33 minutes 20.24 seconds W

D.  29 degrees 30 minutes 02.74 seconds N

      89 degrees 34 minutes 03.93 seconds W

 

Hackberry Bay (2012) – Lafourche Parish

A.  29 degrees 25 minutes 21.16 seconds N

      90 degrees 02 minutes 59.53 seconds W

B.  29 degrees 24 minutes 58.30 seconds N

      90 degrees 02 minutes 51.34 seconds W

C.  29 degrees 24 minutes 29.25 seconds N

      90 degrees 03 minutes 24.92 seconds W

D.  29 degrees 24 minutes 45.37 seconds N

      90 degrees 03 minutes 35.33 seconds W

 

Lake Fortuna (2012) – St. Bernard Parish

A.  29 degrees 39 minutes 08.04 seconds N

      89 degrees 30 minutes 28.93 seconds W

B.  29 degrees 38 minutes 33.31 seconds N

      89 degrees 29 minutes 15.45 seconds W

C.  29 degrees 38 minutes 10.57 seconds N

      89 degrees 29 minutes 40.71 seconds W

D.  29 degrees 39 minutes 04.41 seconds N

      89 degrees 30 minutes 32.61 seconds W

 

South Black Bay (2012) – Plaquemines Parish

A.  29 degrees 34 minutes 41.72 seconds N

      89 degrees 36 minutes 22.86 seconds W

B.  29 degrees 34 minutes 31.45 seconds N

      89 degrees 35 minutes 48.68 seconds W

C.  29 degrees 34 minutes 08.12 seconds N

      89 degrees 36 minutes 07.94 seconds W

D.  29 degrees 34 minutes 23.03 seconds N

      89 degrees 36 minutes 43.20 seconds W

 

In addition, the east side of Calcasieu Lake (Department of Health and Hospitals’ harvest area 29) and the Sabine Lake Public Oyster Area shall remain closed for the entire 2012/2013 oyster season.

Oyster harvesters are also reminded that in addition to normal licenses required for the harvest of oysters, special permits are also required to fish specific public oyster areas.  In Calcasieu Lake, all harvesters are required to hold a valid Calcasieu Lake Oyster Harvester Permit.  The Calcasieu Lake permit is free of charge and is available from the Baton Rouge office of LDWF.  Harvesters fishing all other public oyster areas are required to fish only from a commercial vessel which holds a valid Public Oyster Seed Ground Vessel Permit.  The application deadline for the Public Oyster Seed Ground Vessel Permit is December 31, 2012.

 

Delay on a Portion Public Seed Ground East of the Mississippi River to Protect Developing Oysters

While a majority of the public seed grounds are set to open, oyster season is delayed until further notice in a portion of the public oyster seed grounds east of the Mississippi River in an effort to protect recently-settled young oysters, called spat.  The oyster season was originally scheduled to open in this area on October 29, 2012.  The delay includes that area of the public oyster seed grounds east of the Mississippi River, south of the Mississippi River Gulf Outlet, and north of a line of latitude at 29 degrees 34 minutes 48.0 seconds north. 

The decision was made that the protection of the oyster spat is in the long-term best interest of oyster conservation in this area of the public oyster seed grounds as they represent the future oyster resource in an area where oyster stocks are at historic lows.

Public notice of any opening, delay, or closure of a season will be provided at least 72 hours prior to such action, unless such closure is ordered by the Louisiana Department of Health and Hospitals for public health concerns.

See attached map detailing these opening, closures and delays. 

For more information please contact lwooderson@wlf.la.gov or (504) 430-2623

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