LDWF News Release

LDWF to Hold Lake Bistineau Public Meetings

Release Date: 04/09/2015

(April 9, 2015) – The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries will conduct several informational meetings concerning Lake Bistineau including recent updates and the opportunity for input and discussion.  These meetings are open to the public, and those interested in the status of Lake Bistineau are encouraged to attend.  Space is limited to 100 individuals per meeting.  Please keep this in mind when making plans to attend.   

Who:  LDWF Inland Fisheries staff
What:  Public information meeting on Lake Bistineau
When:  Monday, April 20 and Tuesday, April 21, 2015, at 6:30 p.m.
Where:  Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries Region 1 Office
                Jonathan Glasscock Memorial Classroom
                9961 Hwy. 80
                Minden, LA 71055
The current LDWF Lake Bistineau Management Plan can be viewed at:  http://www.wlf.louisiana.gov/fishing/waterbody-management-plans-inland
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.
For press inquiries, contact Ashley Wethey at awethey@wlf.la.gov or (225) 721-0489.

L.W.F.C. Acknowledged for 50 Years of Support for Waterfowl Habitat Conservation

Release Date: 04/08/2015

L.W.F.C. Acknowledged for 50 Years of Support for Waterfowl Habitat Conservation

April 8, 2015 -- The Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries Commission (LWFC) received a commemorative plaque at their April 2 meeting honoring 50 years of support for waterfowl breeding ground habitat conservation.
The recognition came from Ducks Unlimited at the North American Wildlife and Natural Resource Conference for financial support provided through the Association of Fish and Wildlife Agencies’ State Contributions to Canada Program.  Louisiana, along with Ohio and South Carolina received this distinction for participating in the program since 1965.
The Commission directs statutorily-dedicated state funds through the program to enhance and protect breeding waterfowl habitat in Canada, where many of Louisiana’s migrating and wintering ducks are produced. Previous recognition for this support was received in 2013 when contributions reached over $10 million toward this effort since inception.  Louisiana is one of only three states that have provided funding at this level. California and Illinois are the others.
The money directed by the Commission is matched by Ducks Unlimited and matched again by North American Wetland Conservation Act funding before it goes toward land purchase, conservation easements, wetland and grassland habitat restoration, and habitat management in the Canadian prairies to benefit nesting ducks. Unusually wet conditions along with this significant habitat investment have produced some of the highest duck populations on record.
For more information, contact Larry Reynolds at 225-765-0456 or Jimmy Anthony at 225-765-2806.
*Photo caption -- (left to right) LWFC Vice Chairman Edward Swindell, Commissioner Bart Yakupzack, Commissioner Ronald Graham, LDWF Assistant Secretary Jimmy Anthony, Commission Chairman Pat Manuel, Commissioner Billy Broussard, Commissioner Chad Courville and Commissioner Dan Davis.


Agents Make Drug Cases in Jefferson Parish

Release Date: 04/08/2015

Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries Enforcement Division agents made three drug related cases from April 2 to 4 in Jefferson Parish.

On April 2, agents observed a group of three men on Elmer's Island Refuge with glass bottles where they are prohibited.  Agents found Dylan W. Melancon, 18, and Brett M. Rodrigue, 19, both of Golden Meadow, in possession of marijuana and drug paraphernalia.  Agents also discovered Jhy M. Allison, 21, of Golden Meadow in illegal possession of drug paraphernalia and also cited him for having glass bottles.

On April 3, agents observed a vehicle on Hwy. 1 in Grand Isle swerve several times over the center line.  During the traffic stop, agents found the driver, Jeremy K. Buckner, 36, of Leesville, in possession of 24 packs of synthetic marijuana.  He was charged with possession of marijuana with intent to distribute. The passenger, Michael L. Parrish, 39, of Leesville, was found to have an open alcoholic beverage.

On April 4, agents observed a man fishing on Elmer's Island Refuge.  Agents made contact with Andrew L. Smith, 28, of Avondale, and found him in illegal possession of marijuana.  Agents booked Smith into the Jefferson Parish Jail.

Illegal possession of marijuana with the intent to distribute is a felony and brings a 10 to 50 year jail sentence and up to $50,000 in fines.  Possession of marijuana and drug paraphernalia each carries up to a $500 fine and six months in jail.  Possession of an open alcoholic beverage in a motor vehicle carries a fine up to $100.  Having glass bottles on the Elmer’s Island Refuge brings a $100 to $350 fine and up to 60 days in jail.

Agents involved in the cases are Senior Agent Dale Wheat and Agent Lucas Hidalgo.

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

Louisiana Crab Task Force to Meet on Tuesday, April 14th

Release Date: 04/08/2015

Louisiana Crab Task Force Meeting
Pete Gerica, chairman
Tuesday, April 14,1:00 p.m.
UNO Advanced Technology Center
2021 Lakeshore Drive, Suite 210
New Orleans, Louisiana 70122



  1. Roll Call and introduction of guests
  2. Approval of January 27 meeting minutes and April 14 agenda
  3. Financial Report
  4. Old Business
    1. Professionalism Program Update-LDWF
  5. New Business
    1. Discussion of crab management options-LDWF
    2. 2015 legislation update-LDWF
    3. Penalties for undersized crabs - Eddie Chagnard
    4. Maiden crabs- Eddie Chagnard
    5. Results from the L.D.W.F. Cooperative Research Survey: Selected Statistics for Respondents Who Targeted Crabs- Jack Isaacs
  6. Public Comment
  7. Set Next Meeting
  8. 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 join the meeting via webinar register at  https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/7068149292205155330

For press inquiries please contact Ashley Roth, 504-286-4162 or aroth@wlf.la.gov

To sign up for LDWF Alerts sent as text messages and emails directly to your mobile device click   here.

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.



LDWF Education Section Honors Joe Henderson with Hunter Education Lifetime Achievement Award

Release Date: 04/07/2015

LDWF Education Section Honors Joe Henderson with Hunter Education Lifetime Achievement Award

April 7, 2015 -- Joe Henderson of Jena was honored with the Todd Roberts Memorial Lifetime Achievement Award on April 2 by the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries’ Education Section.
Henderson has dedicated 17 years of volunteer service to teach and mentor thousands of students in the Hunter Education Program.
“He continues each year to provide excitement and encouragement during his instruction of standard hunter education courses as well as the hunter education field days,” said LDWF Education Biologist Supervisor Dana Norsworthy.  “He not only volunteers countless hours to teach these public courses but selfishly commits time to ensure students at both Nebo Elementary School and Jena Junior High School understand the significance of hunter safety, responsibility and ethics.”
Henderson also actively supports 4-H Shooting Sports. He coaches youngsters how to be accurate with shotgun shooting exercises and the importance of muzzle control and safety.
For more information, contact Dana Norsworthy at 318-345-3912 or dnorsworthy@wlf.la.gov .
Photo caption: (left to right) -- Dana Norsworthy, LDWF Education Biologist Supervisor; Wayne Higginbotham, LDWF Education Biologist Manager; Joe Henderson; and Fred Kimmel, LDWF Education Program Manager.


Roads Closed on Richard K. Yancey WMA

Release Date: 04/06/2015

April 6, 2015 – The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries is advising Richard K. Yancey Wildlife Management Area (WMA) users that Hog

Pen Lake Road and Lac A’Sostein Road within the WMA are currently closed to all traffic.
Increasing water levels in the Red River have caused backwater flooding on these roads.  Once the water recedes, vehicular traffic will be allowed.
Richard K. Yancey WMA is located in Concordia Parish, approximately 35 miles south of Ferriday on LA Hwy. 15.
For more information on this WMA, go to http://www.wlf.louisiana.gov/wma/36994 or contact Tony Vidrine at 337-948-0255 or tvidrine@wlf.la.gov .


Boating Education Lagniappe Day Slated for May 2

Release Date: 04/06/2015

The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) will be hosting the fifth annual "Boating Education Lagniappe Day" on May 2 at nine different locations across the state.

During Boating Education Lagniappe Day, LDWF will provide instructors for the National Association of State Boating Law Administrators (NASBLA) boating education course, NASBLA boating education certification, food and drinks, giveaways and door prizes all free of charge to the public.

LDWF urges the public to register quickly as most places have limited spaces available and registration is on a first come first serve basis.

Anybody born after Jan. 1, 1984 must complete a NASBLA approved boating education course and carry proof of completion 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.

Below is the list of class locations and the registration contact information, which can also be found at http://www.wlf.louisiana.gov/lagniappeday

Webster Parish
LDWF Region 1 Office
9961 Hwy. 80
Minden, LA 71055
9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
To register please call 318-371-3049.
Sponsors include the Louisiana Wildlife Agents Association.

Ouachita Parish
Academy Sports and Outdoors
111 Constitutional Dr.
West Monroe, La 71292
9 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.
To register please call 318-343-2417.
Sponsors include Academy Sports and Outdoors, Louisiana Wildlife Agents Association and Pizza Hut.

Rapides Parish
Academy Sports and Outdoors
3205 S MacArthur Dr.
Alexandria, La 71301
8 a.m. to 4 p.m.
To register please call 318-487-5634.
Sponsors include Academy Sports and Outdoors.

St. Landry Parish
St. Landry Lumber
207 N Railroad Ave.
Opelousas, La 70570
9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
To register please call 337-948-0257.
Sponsors include Raising Canes of Opelousas, Louisiana Wildlife Agents Association and St. Landry Lumber of Opelousas.

Calcasieu Parish
Lake Charles Civic Center
900 Lakeshore Dr.
Lake Charles, La 70601
8 a.m. to 4 p.m.
To register please call 337-491-2580.
Sponsors include Whitetails Unlimited and the Louisiana Wildlife Agents Association.

Terrebonne Parish
Terrebonne Parish Sheriff’s Office Rifle Range
2100 Savanne Road.
Houma, La 60360.
8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
To register please call 985-447-0821.
Sponsors include the Louisiana Wildlife Agents Association.

Ascension Parish
Gonzales Boat Club
13311 Diversion Canal Road
St. Amant, La. 70774
8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
To register please call 225-765-2999.
Sponsors include the Gonzales Boat Club.

St. Tammany Parish
Madisonville Branch of St. Tammany Parish Public Library
1123 Main St.
Madisonville, LA 70447
9:15 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
Please call 504-284-2023 to register.
Sponsors include Raising Cane’s and the Louisiana Wildlife Agents Association.

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

L.W.F.C. Approves RFP Process for Allocation of Breeding Grounds Habitat Funds

Release Date: 04/02/2015

April 2, 2015 -- The Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries Commission (LWFC) today approved a Request for Proposals (RFP) to allocate funds for breeding waterfowl habitat work over the next three years.
Since 1965, the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) has provided funding to support conservation of breeding-grounds habitat for migratory waterfowl and by statute allocates a portion of annual hunting license revenue for that purpose.  Specifically, R.S. 56:104(A)(1)(b) states:
“An amount equal to ten percent of the fees collected from the sale of hunting licenses shall be dedicated by the commission to the development and preservation of breeding grounds for migratory waterfowl, the funds to be expended for such purposes through Ducks Unlimited, Inc. or under the direction of the Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries Commission at its discretion ...”
Over the last five years, an average of $322,645 annually has been awarded in two-year or three-year contracts for the protection, restoration, and enhancement of breeding waterfowl habitat.  The current contract expires on June 30, 2015 and LDWF is soliciting three-year proposals for use of all or a portion of that funding during the July 2015 through June 2018 period.  Multiple contracts for partial amounts of the available funding have been awarded in the past at the discretion of the LWFC.
The new RFP process requires that proposals be submitted by Friday, May 22, 2015. Proposals may be submitted to the LDWF Waterfowl Program Manager via regular mail, fax, or e-mail at:
Larry Reynolds, Waterfowl Program Manager
Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries
2000 Quail Drive
Baton Rouge, LA  70808
Office phone: (225) 765-0456
Fax: (225) 763-5456
E-mail: Lreynolds@wlf.la.gov
The top qualifying proposals, as determined by an initial review by the LDWF Waterfowl Section staff, will be presented to the LWFC at their monthly meeting on June 4, 2015 starting at 9:30 a.m. in the Louisiana Room on the first floor of the LDWF Headquarters Building.  No more than five prospective grantees will be given 15 minutes to present proposals to the LWFC.  The Waterfowl Program Manager will inform prospective grantees about the need for a presentation no later than Tuesday, May 26, 2015.  Technical evaluation of proposals by the Waterfowl Section staff will be presented and funding decisions will be made at the July 2, 2015 meeting of the LWFC.
To view the 2015 RFP, past proposals, and reports, go to:http://www.wlf.louisiana.gov/hunting/breeding-waterfowl-habitat
For more information, contact Larry Reynolds at 225-765-0456 or Lreynolds@wlf.la.gov.


Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries Commission adopts notice of intent on inshore recreational reef sites

Release Date: 04/02/2015

(April 2, 2015) - Today, the Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries commission adopted a notice of intent to designate and protect 31 inshore fishing reefs as part of the LDWF Artificial Reef Program.
 Louisiana’s Artificial Reef Program includes a robust offshore ‘Rigs to Reef’ component, the backbone of our reef program.  ‘Rigs to Reef’ was established in 1986 to transform decommissioned oil platforms into artificial reefs to create vital offshore habitat for marine life across the food chain. These platforms also provide productive fishing grounds and dive sites and an economical and responsible way to retire obsolete, donated rigs.
 In the last two years the Artificial Reef Council have added inshore and nearshore components to the program that are modeled after the successful ‘Rigs to Reef’ program.   Today’s commission action designates and protects the 31 inshore artificial reef sites into the future.  In the first 20 years of the artificial reef program LDWF built 16 inshore reefs, during the last 8 years we have nearly doubled that number.
 To view the full notice of intent, please visit here.
 Interested persons may submit comments relevant to the proposed rule by June 4, 2015, to Mike McDonough, Office of Fisheries, P.O. Box 98000, Baton Rouge, LA 70898-1000 or via email at mmcdonough@wlf.la.gov.
 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.
 For press inquires, contact Ashley Wethey at awethey@wlf.la.gov or (504) 765-2396.


L.W.F.C. Approves Hunting Seasons, Hunting Regulations, Turkey Hunting Seasons, Turkey Hunting Regulations and W.M.A. Rules for Upcoming Seasons

Release Date: 04/02/2015

April 2, 2015 -- The Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries Commission (LWFC) approved the 2015-17 hunting season dates and the 2015-16 General and Wildlife Management Areas (WMA) rules and regulations at their April 2 meeting. The season dates approved include the 2016 Turkey season and associated rules and regulations.
The notices of intent presented in January by the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) for the upcoming hunting seasons were approved with an amendment made subsequently in March, and following the public comment period.
That amendment pertained to Biloxi Wildlife Management Area and the use of mud boats or air-cooled propulsion vessels that can only be powered by straight shaft “long tail” air-cooled, mud motors. The original NOI had set the maximum total power limit at 16 hp and the amendment changed the maximum total power limit to 25 total hp or less on the WMA. All other types of mud boats or air cooled propulsion vessels (including “surface drive” boats) are prohibited.
Changes from previous hunting seasons in the approved NOIs include but are not limited to:
*Change to Area 5 Deer Season for the 2016-17 Season, in which Area 5 will become part of Area 1.
*Addition of pistols to allowable gear for primitive firearms season for deer.
*Addition of bird dog training to allowable uses on some Small Game Emphasis Areas on certain WMAs.
*Prohibition on the “possession” of bait on WMAs
*Allowance for certain UTVs to be utilized on ATV trails on WMAs, if the manufacturers specification for weight, length, and width do not exceed those limits set for ATVs.
*Vessel restrictions for Biloxi WMA.
*Prohibition on nighttime activity during open waterfowl seasons on Wham Brake, on Russell Sage WMA.
*Conversion of youth lottery to open youth weekend for turkey on Big Lake WMA.
*Modification to open all ranger districts of Kisatchie National Forest for entire youth weekend for turkey.
*Addition of two days of open season for turkey on US Army Corps of Engineers Indian Bayou Area.
*Addition of youth squirrel season on Maurepas Swamp WMA.
*Addition of six days of firearms either sex deer season on Sherburne WMA.
*Addition of shotgun youth either sex deer season on National Park Service Barataria Preserve.
*Addition of small game opportunity on Bogue Chitto, Black Bayou, Catahoula, and Upper Ouachita National Wildlife Refuges.
*Change in waterfowl closure times from 12:00 noon to 2:00 pm on Cameron Prairie, Lacassine, and Sabine National Wildlife Refuges.
*Addition of youth waterfowl opportunity on Grand Cote, Lake Ophelia, and Red River National Wildlife Refuges.
To view the full notices of intent and all proposed and approved hunting season dates and regulations changes for the upcoming hunting seasons, please visit http://www.wlf.louisiana.gov/action-items.
For more information, contact Steve Smith at 225-765-2359 or ssmith@wlf.la.gov.

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