July 3, 2012 -- The Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries Commission tentatively approved proposed duck hunting dates for the 2012-2013 season at their July 2 meeting.
The dates were presented by the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) for the new three-zone waterfowl season framework that now includes a coastal zone, added recently to the east-west zone configuration that had been in place for decades.
The proposed duck season dates for 2012-2013 are as follows:
East Zone: Nov. 17 – 25 and Dec. 8 – Jan. 27. (Youth Hunt Feb. 2-3)
West Zone: Nov. 10 – Dec. 9, and Dec. 22 – Jan. 20. (Youth Hunt Nov. 3-4)
The dates recommended reflect preferences noted in the recent waterfowl hunter survey conducted by the Department via a mail-out and an on-line survey form.
The public can comment on the proposed season dates until Aug. 2 by sending comments to: Larry Reynolds, Waterfowl Program Manager, Department of Wildlife and Fisheries, P.O. Box 98000, Baton Rouge, LA 70898-9000 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
For more information, contact Larry Reynolds at 225-765-0456.
Submitted by jcourtney on Tue, 07/03/2012 - 1:54pm
July 2, 2012 -- The Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries Commission today issued a notice of intent with the proposed 2013 wild turkey season and regulation changes. The proposed season framework was presented by the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries’ (LDWF) Wildlife Division at the Commission’s monthly meeting. The public has 60 days to comment on the department’s recommendation.
If approved as presented, the 2013 wild turkey season would open March 23 in three designated areas with varying end of season dates as follows: Area A, March 23 - April 21; Area B, March 23 - April 14; and Area C, March 23 - April 7 using the same geographic boundaries utilized in 2012. The statewide youth and physically challenged hunter weekend for private lands would be set for March 16-17.
Additionally, on USFWS-managed National Wildlife Refuges and US Army Corps of Engineer properties the following turkey hunting dates would be available: Bogue Chitto NWR, March 23 - April 14; Lake Ophelia NWR, March 23 - April 7; Tensas NWR, youth hunters March 16-17 plus March 23 - April 7; Upper Ouachita NWR, youth hunters March 16; Indian Bayou USACOE, youth/physically challenged dates on March 16-17, 23-24 and 30-31; and Old River USACOE, March 23 - April 7.
Proposed changes include added youth lottery hunts on Kisatchie National Forest in the Catahoula, Caney, Kisatchie and Winn ranger districts.
WMA turkey season changes would include reduced days on Sherburne WMA, an earlier season opening on Dewey Wills WMA, an added youth hunt day on Pearl River WMA, an additional three-day lottery hunt on Union WMA, a requirement that Tunica Hills WMA hunters wear research GPS devices and a fall season limit of one turkey at Peason Ridge WMA.
Public comments can be submitted by mail to Kenny Ribbeck, LDWF Wildlife Division, P. O. Box 98000, Baton Rouge, LA 70898-9000, or email to email@example.com through Sept. 6, 2012.
July 2, 2012 -- The Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries Commission set the dates for the 2012-2013 early migratory bird hunting seasons at their July 2 meeting. These dates, recommended by the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries, are tentative pending U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service approval.
The proposed dove season is broken down into a north and south zone with each zone having three segments and includes mourning, white-winged, Eurasian collared and ringed-turtle doves. The dove season in the south zone would go from Sept. 1-9, Oct. 13 - Nov. 25 and Dec. 22 - Jan. 7. The north zone would be from Sept. 1-16, Oct. 6 - Nov. 4 and Dec. 15 - Jan. 7. The daily bag limit for mourning, white-winged and fully dressed Eurasian collared-doves and ringed-turtle doves would be 15 in aggregate and possession of 30 in aggregate. However, there is no bag limit on Eurasian collared-doves or ringed turtle-doves provided that a fully feathered wing and head remain attached to the carcass of the bird. Fully dressed Eurasian-collared doves and ringed turtle-doves (those without a fully feathered wing and head naturally attached to the carcass) shall be included in the aggregate bag.
The following boundary divides the dove season zones: Beginning at the Texas-Louisiana border on La. Hwy. 12; thence east along La. Hwy. 12 to its intersection with U.S. Hwy. 190; thence east along U.S. Hwy. 190 to its intersection with Interstate 12; thence east along I-12 to its intersection with Interstate 10; then east along I-10 to the Mississippi state line.
Blue-winged, green-winged and cinnamon teal season would last from Sept. 15 - 30 with a daily bag limit of four (4) and a possession limit of eight (8). Federal and state waterfowl stamps are required to harvest teal.
Rail and gallinule seasons are proposed to last 70 days. The first segment would be open from Sept. 15 - 30. The other segment will be set in August with the regular waterfowl seasons. King and clapper rails would have a daily bag limit of 15 with a possession limit of 30. Sora and Virginia rails would have a daily and possession limit totaling 25. Common and purple gallinules would have a daily bag limit of 15 and possession limit totaling 30.
Under the proposal, woodcock season would last 45 days from Dec. 18 - Jan. 31, statewide. A three-bird daily bag limit and a six-bird possession limit would be allowed.
Snipe season will be set in August.
Shooting and hawking hours for dove, woodcock, rail, teal and gallinules are tentatively set for half an hour before sunrise to sunset, except for a 12 noon start time on the first day of dove season on Sept. 1, 2012.
Extended falconry mourning dove season would open from Sept. 17 - Oct. 3. Extended falconry woodcock season would open from Oct. 28 - Dec. 17 and will reopen from Feb. 1-11. The falconry daily bag limit would be three and possession limit of six birds for all permitted migratory game birds during the extended falconry and regular hunting seasons. Extended falconry seasons for ducks, rails and gallinules will be set in August with the waterfowl regulations.
Hunters are reminded that they must have a HIP permit to hunt migratory birds. HIP permits are free and are available wherever hunting licenses are sold.
May 24, 2012 - The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) would like to remind recreational anglers and hunters that the 2011-2012 licenses will expire on June 30. Licenses for the 2012-2013 seasons become available for purchase on June 1 and are valid until June 30, 2013.
Recreational fishing and hunting licenses can be purchased in several ways. They may be purchased online at www.wlf.louisiana.gov/licenses, by calling 1-888-765-2602, at local license vendors or at LDWF offices in Baton Rouge, Opelousas, Lake Charles, Pineville and Monroe. Acceptable methods of payment for purchases made online or by phone are Visa, MasterCard, Discover, American Express or E-Check.
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.louisiana.gov, on Facebook at www.facebook.com/ldwffb or follow us on Twitter @LDWF.
The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) is sponsoring two summer day camps for children 12 to 16 years old at the Waddill Outdoor Education Center in Baton Rouge this summer.
The camps will be held from June 25-29 and again from July 23-27. Each camp is completely free of charge and will allow participants to receive their official boater and hunter education certifications.
LDWF will also offer a fish identification class, fishing and canoeing in the ponds at the Waddill Outdoor Education Center, skeet shooting, and other outdoor related classes and activities.
"Last year’s first ever summer camp proved so successful that we wanted to do two this year. These camps provide a lot of time for learning classroom material that the children then get a chance to utilize with hands on activities immediately outside later that same day,” said LDWF Secretary Robert Barham. “For a week, parents have the chance to let their kids become sportsmen and women in a safe, supervised environment.”
The Louisiana Wildlife Agents Association and Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries Foundation are providing a daily lunch free of charge for the five-day summer camps. Cabela's in Gonzales also donated rod and reel combo sets for each child that they can take home at the end of the camp.
The camps are open to 25 children per camp who have not completed a boater or hunter education certificate.
To register for the camps, parents must fill out the online application located at www.wlf.louisiana.gov/summerdaycamp2012 by May 25. Parents must fill out a separate application for each child they wish to register and may only register their child for one of the camps.
Since the main goal of these camps is to introduce and teach kids about the outdoors, LDWF will choose the 25 kids for each camp based on the child’s lack of experience with fishing, boating and hunting. LDWF will notify parents by either email or phone if their child has been selected for the camps.
“We want to teach children how much fun and exciting it can be by spending time outside enjoying all that Louisiana has to offer,” said Secretary Barham. “These camps also get the kids out of the house away from their video games and computers for a week during their summer break. They will catch some fish, paddle canoes and shoot skeet and for some this might be their first time ever doing any of these activities.”
Parents with children that have been selected for either camp, must drop off their child at the Waddill Outdoor Education Center located at 4142 North Flannery Rd., Baton Rouge, LA 70814 between 7 and 8 a.m., and then pick their child up between 4 and 5 p.m. each day. Attendance every day of the week is mandatory in order to receive the boating and hunting education certifications.
The boating education course is mandatory for anybody born after Jan. 1, 1984 and proof of completion of the course is necessary to operate a motorboat in excess of 10 horsepower. The course includes information on choosing a boat, classification, hulls, motors, legal requirements and equipment requirements. The course also covers many navigation rules and charts, trailering, sailboats, canoeing, personal watercraft and more. Completion of the course will result in the student being issued a vessel operators certification card.
The hunter education course is mandatory for anyone born on or after Sept. 1, 1969, who plans on purchasing a hunting license. The hunter education curriculum includes sections on ethics and responsibility, wildlife management, firearms and ammunition, safety in the field, wildlife identification and wildlife conservation. The major objectives of the hunter education programs are to reduce the number of hunting accidents, improve the image of hunting through ethical and responsible conduct and promote the shooting sports.
Nov. 12, 2011 -The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) is advising hunters to remain alert for possible encounters with black bears during hunting season.
With Louisiana’s growing black bear population the opportunities for bear sightings and encounters with bears has increased. Additionally, bears are actively foraging at this time of year to gain weight for denning season. LDWF urges hunters to carry bear spray as a personal protection alternative to firearms.
Recent reports of black bears on Atchafalaya Delta Wildlife Management Area at the southern edge of the Atchafalaya Basin have prompted LDWF to post signage that hunters need to take necessary safety precautions when hunting in this remote location. LDWF recommends the following for all hunters on public and private hunting property:
Basic Tips for Hunters Statewide:
Corn used as bait will concentrate bear activity – consider an alternative food source. It is recommended that hunters utilize food plots such as soy beans, when possible, which will be less likely to attract bears.
Be aware that bears forage for mast crops and will be attracted to food sources that attract deer. Heavy mast crop trees may become a food source that bears will defend.
If You Are Approached by a Bear While Hunting:
Stand your ground, raise your arms to appear larger, speak in a normal voice and make the bear aware of your presence. Back away slowly when possible.
If the bear continues to approach, stand your ground. Prepare to use your bear spray per the manufacturer’s recommendation. This product can be easily carried in a belt holster and can be obtained via the Internet.
Never run from a bear, as this may trigger the bear’s chase instinct.
If attacked by a bear, defend yourself with any available weapon.
The Louisiana black bear remains on the federal Threatened and Endangered Species List. LDWF’s Black Bear Program needs any information hunters can provide on a close encounter with a bear. For assistance with black bears in any situation that public safety is threatened, call 1-800-442-2511 toll free, seven days a week.
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.louisiana.gov on Facebook at www.facebook.com/ldwffb or follow us on Twitter @LDWF.
Submitted by jcourtney on Sat, 11/12/2011 - 2:15pm