LDWF News

LDWF News Release

Six Men Arrested For Closed Season Oyster Violations In St Bernard Parish

Release Date: 08/31/2015

Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) Enforcement Division agents arrested six subjects on board two vessels for alleged oyster violations in St. Bernard Parish on Aug. 28.

Agents arrested Glenn J. Cascio Sr., 54, and Glenn J. Cascio Jr., 35, both of St. Bernard, from one vessel and Baron T. Navarro, 40, of Mereaux, Sotelo A. Galdino, 36, of Seabrook, Texas, Rigoberto Badillo-Gomez, 38, Mereaux, and Jose Camalgo, 18, of of Seabrook, Texas, from another vessel for taking oysters during a closed season.  Navarro was also cited for failing to comply with refrigeration requirements.

Due to numerous complaints of illegal oyster harvesting on the State Seed Grounds in Drum Bay, agents set up surveillance nearby and at 3:30 p.m. observed two oyster vessels enter the area and begin dredging.  The Drum Bay public grounds are currently closed to all oyster harvesting.

Agents stopped both vessels and found each to have loose oysters on their decks and in their dredges. Agents seized all four dredges and a total of 136 sacks of oysters, which were returned to the water.

All men were booked into the St. Bernard Parish Jail.

Taking oysters during a closed season brings a $900 to $950 fine and up to 120 days in jail.  Any person convicted of this violation may only harvest oysters from a vessel that employs a vessel monitoring system monitored by LDWF for a period of one year.  Failing to comply with refrigeration requirements carries a $400 to $950 fine and up to 120 days in jail.

Agents participating in the case are Capt. Stephen McManus, Lt. Scot Keller, Sgts. Keith Francis, Adam Young, Mike Garrity and Villere Reggio, Agent Jason Gernados and Senior Agent Richard Clark.

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

AGENDA FOR COMMISSION MEETING

Release Date: 08/28/2015

The next regular Commission Meeting will be held at 9:30 AM on Thursday, September 3, 2015, at the Wildlife and Fisheries Headquarters Building located at 2000 Quail Drive, Baton Rouge, LA
The following items will be discussed:
1.  Roll Call
2.  Approval of Minutes of August 6, 2015
3.  Commission Special Announcements/Personal Privilege
4.  Recognition and Presentation of Five Civilian Meritorious Service Awards
5.  Presentation on the Youth Hunter of the Year Contest 
6.  To hear Enforcement Reports August 2015
7. To Consider the Department of Wildlife and Fisheries staff evaluation of the three proposals for use of Breeding Habitat Statutory dedicated funding
8.  To Consider a Resolution to rename the Sicily Island Hills Wildlife Management Area to the J.C. “Sonny” Gilbert Wildlife Management Area
9.    To Consider a Resolution to add the Kennedy Rice Dryers Tract to the Russell Sage Wildlife Management Area
10.  To Consider a Resolution to add the Steele Tract to the Bayou Pierre Wildlife Management Area
11.  To Consider a Notice of Intent for the 2016 Abandoned Crab Trap Removal
12.  To Consider a Declaration of Emergency to Set the 2015-2016 Oyster Season on the Public Oyster Areas of Louisiana
13.  Set January 2016 Meeting Date
14.  Receive Public Comments
15.  Adjournment
To access a live stream of the event, please register for September 2015 LWF Commission Meeting on Sep 3, 2015 9:30 PM CDT at:
After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the webinar.
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Reminder - LDWF news release contact List to be updated

Release Date: 08/28/2015

(August 28, 2015) - The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries would like for anyone who wants to continue receiving our news releases to signup at: http://www.wlf.louisiana.gov/signup
 
On September 1st, LDWF will purge our existing email database and only use the email contacts who have signed up at the new website above. 
 
Media and individuals with LDWF interests are encouraged to signup to stay informed of our important news. 
 
Additionally, individuals have the opportunity to signup for specific categories of information that are tailored to their interests.  Commercial and recreational fishermen also have the ability to signup for text as well as email alerts that are tailored to their selections.
 
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 inquiries, contact Rene LeBreton at rlebreton@wlf.la.gov or (504) 286-8745

 

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LDWF Announces September Public Meetings on Waterfowl and Waterfowl Hunting

Release Date: 08/28/2015

Aug. 28, 2015 – The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries will offer six public meetings in September at locations around the state to provide information and accept comments on a variety of waterfowl hunting topics.
 
The intent of each meeting is to 1) solicit public input on waterfowl hunting zones and splits, 2) discuss recent changes in goose hunting regulations, 3) inform hunters about changes in the timing and process for setting waterfowl hunting season dates, and 4) hear public comments on other waterfowl-related topics.
 
All meetings will begin at 6:00 p.m. and the dates and locations are as follows:
 
*Monday, Sept. 14: Bossier Sheriff Sub Station, 2510 Viking Drive, Bossier City, LA 71111
 
*Tuesday, Sept. 15: West Monroe Convention Center, 901 Ridge Ave., West Monroe, LA  71291
 
*Thursday, Sept. 17: Alexandria Convention Hall, 915 3rd Street, Alexandria, LA 71301
 
*Tuesday, Sept. 22: Estuarine Habitats & Coastal Fisheries Center, 646 Cajundome Blvd., Lafayette, LA 70506
 
*Wednesday, Sept. 23: Joseph S. Yenni Building, 1221 Elmwood Park Blvd., 2nd Floor Council Chambers, Jefferson, LA 70123
 
*Thursday, Sept. 24:  LSU Ag. Center, 7101 Gulf Hwy, Lake Charles, LA 70607
 
“We’re making a big change in setting waterfowl hunting season dates, and it is happening at the same time we have the opportunity to change our waterfowl zones and splits for the 2016-17 through 2020-21 seasons,” said Larry Reynolds, LDWF Program Manager. 
 
The 2015-16 waterfowl hunting season dates were set by the Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries Commission (LWFC) at their August 6, 2015 meeting in Baton Rouge.  However, dates for the 2016-17 and future waterfowl hunting seasons will be established in the future during the normal period for establishing other hunting seasons in the state, which will begin with a Notice of Intent in January each year.  Establishment of zones and splits for the next five years is currently being considered by the LWFC.  A decision by the LWFC on zones and splits will be made during the November 5, 2015 meeting in Baton Rouge, thus these public hearings are the department’s attempt to gather additional public input for the LWFC to consider in their decision on zones and splits establishment for the next five years.
 
For more information, contact Larry Reynolds at 225-765-0456 or lreynolds@wlf.la.gov.

 

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Update on Road Access Within Richard K. Yancey WMA

Release Date: 08/26/2015

Aug. 26, 2015 – The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries is advising Richard K. Yancey Wildlife Management Area users that Hogpen Lake Road, Lac-A-Sostien Road, Goose Lake Road, Blount Road, Catfish Bayou Road, and Ross Road from the Crowfoot to Long Bayou, are once again open to vehicle traffic.  Dobbs Bay Road and all roads on the east side of the Mississippi River levee remain closed at this time.

Increasing water levels in associated river systems had caused backwater flooding on these thoroughfares.  Once the water recedes, LDWF will inspect Dobbs Bay Road and all roads on the east side of the Mississippi River levee and reopen those thoroughfares when deemed safe for travel. 

Richard K. Yancey WMA is located approximately 35 miles south of Ferriday on Louisiana Hwy. 15 in lower Concordia Parish. 

For information on this WMA, go to http://www.wlf.louisiana.gov/wma/36994 or contact Tony Vidrine at 337-948-0255 or tvidirne@wlf.la.gov .

 

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Update on Fools Bay Low Water Crossing Within Grassy Lake WMA

Release Date: 08/26/2015

Aug. 26, 2015 – The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries is advising Grassy Lake Wildlife Management Area (WMA) users that the Fool’s Bay low water crossing on North Bayou Natchitoches Road has been repaired and is open for vehicular use.

 

Increasing water levels in associated river systems had caused backwater flooding and damage to the crossing in the spring, and forced closure of the thoroughfare throughout the summer.
 
Grassy Lake WMA is located in northeastern Avoyelles Parish, approximately 12 miles from Bordelonville.
 
For more information on this WMA, go to http://www.wlf.louisiana.gov/wma/2767  or contact Tony Vidrine at 337-948-0255 or tvidrine@wlf.la.gov .
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Five Cited for Violating Scenic River Regulations

Release Date: 08/26/2015

Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) Enforcement Division agents cited five men for failing to comply with scenic river regulations on Aug. 22 in East Baton Rouge Parish.

Agents cited Joe Baggett, 36, Dylan Boyd, 21, Kevin Rothman, 35, Micah Boyd, 46, and Dustin Boyd, 25, all of Denham Springs for riding vehicles in the Comite River just south of Zachary.

Agents have received several complaints over the summer of people riding vehicles in this scenic river and have increased their patrol efforts in the area.  Agents found Bagget in a Suzuki Samauri and the four other men in some sort of all-terrain vehicle riding down the Comite River around 12:45 p.m.

Scenic river regulations prohibit the use of a motor vehicle or other wheeled or tracked vehicle on a designated system stream, except for permitted uses and direct crossings by immediately adjacent landowners, lessees, and persons who have written permission from the landowner for non-commercial activities that do not significantly degrade the ecological integrity of the stream.

Violators of the scenic river rules face a $250 to $500 fine and up to six months of jail time.

Agents involved in the case are Lt. Will Roberts, Sgt. Carl Armstrong, Agent Max Wilkinson and Agent Hunter Pearson.

The Louisiana Scenic Rivers Act of 1970 provides LDWF the authority to regulate those activities that may directly and significantly degrade the ecological integrity of a natural and scenic river. The Louisiana Legislature created the Louisiana Natural and Scenic Rivers System for the purpose of preserving, protecting, developing, reclaiming, and enhancing the wilderness qualities, scenic beauties, and ecological regimes of certain free-flowing Louisiana streams. Today, there are approximately 3,000 miles of designated Natural and Scenic Rivers in the state.

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

Public Oyster Seed Ground Vessel Permit Appeals Board to Meet

Release Date: 08/24/2015

The Public Oyster Seed Ground Vessel Permit Appeals Board will meet on Wednesday, August 26, 2015. The meeting will convene at 10:00 a.m. in second floor conference room of the University of New Orleans’ Advanced Technology Center located at 2021 Lakeshore Drive in New Orleans.  

Agenda items for the meeting of the Public Oyster Seed Ground Vessel Permit Appeals Board are as follows:

  1. Roll Call of Board Members
  2. Approval of Minutes from April 7, 2015 Meeting
  3. Hearing of New Renewal Permit Appeals
    1. Robert Nelson
    2. Todd Stipelcovich
  4. Update on Recommendations Made at April 7, 2015 Meeting
  5. Receive Public Comments
  6. Set next meeting date
  7. 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 and Sabine 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

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.  To receive recreational or commercial fishing email and text alerts, signup at http://www.wlf.la.gov/signup.

 

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LDWF Schedules Cotile Lake Drawdown for Aquatic Vegetation Control

Release Date: 08/24/2015

(Aug. 24, 2015) – The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries has scheduled a drawdown for Cotile Lake in Rapides Parish on September 8, 2015 as part of an integrated management plan to control nuisance aquatic vegetation.
 
The lake level will be lowered at a rate of approximately 4 inches per day to a maximum of 8 feet below pool stage. As the water level is lowered, herbicide sprays will be conducted, particularly in those areas accessible with spray equipment.
 
The control structure will be closed no later than January 15, 2016, to allow the lake to refill.
 
In addition to the drawdown and herbicide applications, 1,000 triploid grass carp were previously stocked in the lake to slow the regrowth of hydrilla.
 
Although the lake will not be closed to fishing, caution is advised of boaters during the low water period as boat lanes will not provide normal clearance for underwater obstructions.
 
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 additional information regarding the drawdown, contact Ricky Moses, LDWF Biologist Manager, at rmoses@wlf.la.gov or (318) 487-5885. For press inquiries contact Ashley Wethey at awethey@wlf.la.gov or (504) 286-8733.

L.D.W.F. Enforcement Division Academy to Enroll Up to 24 Cadets for Training

Release Date: 08/24/2015

The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries’ (LDWF) Law Enforcement Division will begin training up to 24 cadets in December of 2015 to bolster the ranks of agents in the field.

The cadets will train at the department’s training facility housed within the Waddill Outdoor Education Center in Baton Rouge. Successful completion of six months of intensive physical and academic training is required to graduate.

The opening dates that applications will be accepted for the “Wildlife Enforcement Cadet” position will be from Aug. 24 to Sept. 9.

“An LDWF enforcement agent has a tremendous responsibility, protecting Louisiana’s rich natural resources, and those who enjoy those resources, whether in the field or on the water,” said LDWF Secretary Robert Barham. “And those responsibilities extend to response efforts during natural disasters when citizens need assistance in impacted areas.”

At the academy, cadets train to enforce the state's recreational boating laws, the state and federal wildlife and fisheries laws, and general law enforcement work on the state's many wildlife management areas.  The academy also covers general law enforcement training required for all state law enforcement officers.

Agents are additionally trained for search and rescue and serve as the lead responders in search and rescue coordination under the Governor’s Office of Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness.

“We are looking for men and women who have a love for the outdoors, want to enforce conservation laws and can make it through a demanding six months of training,” said LDWF Col. Joey Broussard, head of the Law Enforcement Division.

This class of graduating agents will fill field office vacancies around the state.  Each cadet is assigned to a parish and must reside in that parish upon completion of the academy.

Interested applicants can apply online through the Department of Civil Service website and must complete the LEAPS test to qualify for consideration. Please visit the civil service website at http://www.civilservice.louisiana.gov/ for “Wildlife Enforcement Cadet” position and LEAPS testing application information.

For more information including a video about becoming an LDWF agent, please visit www.wlf.louisiana.gov/enforcement/becoming-agent.

LDWF is charged with managing, conserving, and promoting wise utilization of Louisiana's renewable fish and wildlife resources and their supporting habitats through replenishment, protection, enhancement, research, development, and education for the social and economic benefit of current and future generations; to provide opportunities for knowledge of and use and enjoyment of these resources; and to promote a safe and healthy environment for the users of the resources.

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

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