LDWF News Release

Louisiana Oyster Task Force Legislative Committee Meeting

Release Date: 03/11/2013



The following is the agenda for the Louisiana Oyster Task Force Legislative Committee. The public is invited to attend. 


Thursday, March 14, 2013 1 p.m.

UNO Advanced Technology Center, 2021 Lakeshore Drive, Suite 210, New Orleans



I.  Call to Order

II. Consideration of Oyster Task Force bills for the 2013 legislative session. 

A.  Increase penalties for theft and polluted oysters

B.  Sunset of Seed Ground Vessel Permit 

     C.   Appeals for exclusion zones in current Aquaculture Bill (HB1190)

D.  Drum Fish Predation


III. Adjourn





LDWF Advisory on Black Bears in St. Mary Parish

Release Date: 03/11/2013

March 11, 2013 – The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) is again advising St. Mary Parish residents to take precautions to minimize encounters with black bears. Today’s advisory follows the recent injury of a dog that chased a bear in a Patterson neighborhood.

Bears are seeking food sources in and around neighborhoods throughout the parish. This can include plentiful live oak acorns in people’s yards and unsecured garbage containers. Pet food containers left outdoors will also attract black bears.

LDWF has partnered with St. Mary Parish to provide homeowners bear-proof garbage containers to control this easy-access food source problem. Homeowners who already have bear-proof garbage containers are advised to make sure the cans are locked and not overfilled.

During this peak time of higher than normal bear activity, residents are advised to secure their dogs.  Bears are normally shy and non-confrontational, but will protect themselves and their cubs when chased by dogs.

LDWF will continue to set traps in neighborhoods where nuisance bears re-appear and work with the parish to ensure compliance with bear-proof garbage container instructions.  Intentional feeding of bears is against state law and violators are subject to citations.  Patrols in this area will increase during this time to help minimize problems.  Residents should report broken garbage containers to the St. Mary Parish bear conflict officer at 337-828-4100.  To report problems with bears call 1-800-442-2511.  

For more information, contact Maria Davidson, LDWF Wildlife Division, ph. 225-931-3061.



Hunting and Fishing Advisory Education Council Meeting Set for March 12

Release Date: 03/08/2013


The Hunting and Fishing Advisory Education Council will meet Tuesday, March 12, 2013 at 1:30 p.m. at the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries headquarters building located at 2000 Quail Drive in Baton Rouge.

The agenda for Tuesday’s meeting in the 4th floor conference room is as follows:

1. Roll Call

2. Approval of Minutes of Oct. 16, 2012

3. Chairman Welcome and Opening Comments

 4. Office of Fisheries Report: Red Snapper Management

 5. Enforcement Division Report

 6. Office of Management and Finance Report

 7. Office of Wildlife Report: Proposed Deer Season Changes

 8. Pre-Session Legislative Update

 9. Set Next Meeting Date

 10. Receive Public Comments

 11. Adjournment





Louisiana Shrimp Task Force and Management Subcommittee to Meet Next Week

Release Date: 03/07/2013


March 7, 2013 – Next Thursday the Louisiana Shrimp Task Force and Management Subcommittee will meet in Baton Rouge at the Waddill Outdoor Education Center located at located at 4142 N Flannery Rd, Baton Rouge, LA 70814.

 The Management Subcommittee will meet at 10 a.m. with the following agenda:


    I.  Introductions

    II.  Skimmer Legislation Discussion

    III.  Serviceable Crab Trap Discussion

    IV.  Experimental Gear Discussion

    V.  State Water Boundary Discussion

    VI.  Adjourn


The full Shrimp Task Force will meet at 1 p.m. with the following agenda:

    I.  Introduction

    II.  Roll Call

    III.  STF Membership Discussion

    IV. Text Alert System

    V.  Update from the Management Subcommittee

    VI.  Update on Safe Harbor Program

    VII. Update on Ethics Training

    VIII. Certification Program Update

     IX.  Set Next Meeting Date

     X.  Public Comment

     XI.  Adjourn

The Louisiana Shrimp Task Force was created by Act 606 of the Louisiana Legislature to study and monitor the shrimp industry and to make recommendations to the state.

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.

This meeting is open to the public.

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



Exciting New Program for Louisiana Bass Anglers

Release Date: 03/06/2013

LDWF encourages bass clubs and tournament organizers to provide tournament results


(March 6, 2013) – “Where’s the best place to fish for bass?” It’s a common question inquiring minds of Louisiana anglers want to know.  And the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries will soon be able to provide that information through the launch of their new Louisiana Bass Tournament Program, an organized, mutually beneficial method of collecting bass tournament data. 

The program compiles input from clubs and tournament trails, and the data is made available to anyone interested in the status of selected bass fisheries in Louisiana. 

An annual report will be generated at the end of each year and made available online.  Our 2013 report will be available in early 2014.  Results will give anglers a good idea of what they can expect when fishing different lakes and a way to see how they stacked up against other anglers. 

Anyone who hosts a bass tournament on Louisiana’s waters can participate, and completing the report card takes just a few minutes.  Please contact Chase Chatelain at cchatelain@wlf.la.gov or (318) 748-6914 to request a report card or visit http://www.wlf.la.gov/louisiana-bass-tournament-program for more information.

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 inquires, contact Ashley Wethey at awethey@wlf.la.gov or (225) 765-2396.



LDWF Schedules Herbicide Spray on Saline Lake

Release Date: 03/06/2013

(March 6, 2013) – The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries has scheduled a series of large-scale herbicide applications on Saline Lake as a preventative measure to reduce the coverage of giant salvinia before the plant’s maximum growing season this spring. 

The effort is part of an integrated management approach that also includes herbicide treatments, biological control with salvinia weevils and lake drawdowns. 

Boat-based sprayers are scheduled to begin herbicide applications on Monday, March 11.  Approximately 1,000 acres of the invasive plant will be targeted for this effort.  To increase efficiency, spraying will be scheduled to include periods of inactivity to allow for sprayed plants to die and sink. 

Last year, over 50 percent of the lake’s surface was covered with giant salvinia, totaling roughly 4,200 acres.  A drawdown was conducted during the fall and winter seasons as a control measure.  The drawdown reduced salvinia coverage by over 50 percent.    A second drawdown is scheduled for the fall of 2013.

The Department wants to remind the public of LDWF standard procedure that restricts the use of herbicides only to those certified as safe by the EPA.  When applied properly, these herbicides are also not harmful to fish and other aquatic organisms.    

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 (225) 765-2396.



LDWF Enforcement Agent Receives DWI Award

Release Date: 03/05/2013

Sgt. Miller receives award from LHSC Lt. Col. John LeBlanc

A Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) Enforcement Division agent received a driving or operating a boat while intoxicated (DWI) enforcement award on March 5 in Baton Rouge.

Sgt. Toby Miller, 34, of Kentwood, received the Louisiana Highway Safety Commission’s (LHSC) DWI Enforcement Award for the LDWF Enforcement Division for the second year in a row.

“Winning this award for the second year in a row shows Sgt. Miller’s dedication to keeping the waterways safe from impaired operators,” said Col. Winton Vidrine, head of the LDWF Enforcement Division.  “In addition to protecting the state’s resources such as fish and game, all of our agents are well trained in DWI detection and enforcement.”

Miller is a 13 year veteran of the Enforcement Division and works out of the LDWF Region 7 Office in Baton Rouge and is assigned to patrol the St. Helena Parish area.

During the fifth annual DWI Law Enforcement Awards Program, the LHSC issued DWI awards to at least 10 officers representing their respective law enforcement agencies.

In Louisiana, a DWI can be issued to anyone operating a moving vessel or vehicle with a blood alcohol concentration of .08 or higher.  First offense DWI on the water or on the road carries a $300 to $1,000 fine and up to six months in jail.  Second offense DWI brings a $750 to $1,000 fine and between 30 days and six months in jail.  Third offense DWI carries a $5,000 fine and between one and five years in jail.

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



REVISED Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries Commission Meeting

Release Date: 03/05/2013

The next regular Commission Meeting will be held at 9:30 AM on Thursday, March 7, 2013, at the Waddill Outdoor Education Center, 4142 North Flannery Rd, Baton Rouge, LA 70814.

The following items will be discussed:

1.  Roll Call

2.  Approval of Minutes of February 7, 2013

3.  Commission Special Announcements/Personal Privilege

4.  To Hear Enforcement & Aviation Reports/February

5.  To Receive Public Comments on Notice of Intent for the 2013-2015 Hunting Season Dates

6.  To Receive Public Comments on Notice of Intent for General WMA Hunting Rules and Regulations

7.  To Receive Public Comments on Notice of Intent for DMAP Fee Corrections

8.  To consider a Declaration of Additional Acreage to Maurepas Swamp WMA

9.  To Consider Resolution of Support for the LDWF Assessment of Blue Crab in Louisiana Water

10.  To Discuss Grand Isle as a location to host August Commission Meeting 

11.  Set July 2013 Meeting Date

12.  Receive Public Comments

13.  Executive Session to Discuss Prospective Litigation Relative to Return of Artificial Reef Fund Monies

14.  Adjournment



LASS Tournament Anglers Enjoy First Live Weigh-in in Tournament History

Release Date: 03/05/2013

(March 5, 2013) – Proud anglers took the stage showing off their trophy catches at Saturday’s Northshore Boat-N-Fishing Show in Slidell, host to the first live weigh-in in Louisiana Saltwater Series Redfish Tournament history.  According to LASS Tournament Director Mandy Tumlin, 25 of the 47 participating teams entered in the tournament came to scales with fish to be weighed, tagged and released.  The field of anglers was led by first place finishers Nash Roberts, IV and Luke Landry, both of the New Orleans area, whose catch weighed in at 15.22 pounds, winning them a $2,500 purse. 

“The fish were on a typical cold weather pattern,” explained first place finisher Nash Roberts, IV.  “We caught more fish on the tournament day then we did in practice, with several fish over the slot limit.”

This is Roberts and Landry’s third year to participate in the tournament, but there was no shortage of new faces to the series, with nine teams participating for their first time.

A total of 74 redfish were brought in, tagged and released as part of the Louisiana Marine Sport Fish Tagging Program, where anglers become citizen scientists for the agency, collecting invaluable data.

Tumlin said the kick-off tournament for the Louisiana Saltwater Redfish Series, a six-event tour plus a championship, “never fails to draw the crowds.” She said despite the weather, the anglers and their families “had a great time,” finding good fishing, friendly people and lots of entertainment.

The top finishing teams, taking home over $8,360 in cash prizes, include: 2nd place, Chris Pike, Jr. and Darin LeBlanc; 3rd place, Jason LeBlanc and Kory Matherne; 4th place, Joe and John Barcelona; 5th place, Steve Smith and John Garrison; 6th place, Matthew Whitman and Ryan Schellhaas; 7th place, Gary and Gus Wilson; 8th place, Ben Saucier and Adam Shields; and 9th place, Pete Denham and Pete Miller.

Beyond the standard 100% payout cash prizes, brothers Gus and Gary Wilson took home a brand new trolling motor sponsored by Mercury by preregistering for all six tournaments, qualifying them for a special raffle.  Roberts, IV and Landry also took home a rod and reel package sponsored by Shimano for winning one of the extra fish raffle prizes.  Teams are allowed to bring in extra fish in addition to their weigh-in fish to be entered into drawings for special prizes, with the number of entries determined by the number of extra fish to be brought in to be tagged.  In addition to their winnings, Roberts, IV and Landry also bagged a $500 contingency prize sponsored by Standard Mapping. 

The next redfish tournament is scheduled for Saturday, April 20 in Lake Charles at Calcasieu Point Landing.  For complete information, including rules, regulations and registration go to www.lasaltwaterseries.com.

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 more information, contact Ashley Wethey at awethey@wlf.la.gov (225) 765-2396.



Charter Guide Sentenced for Tuna Violations and Resisting Agents in Plaquemines Parish

Release Date: 03/01/2013

A Denham Springs man, who owns Deep South Charters out of Venice, was sentenced on Feb. 27 in Plaquemines Parish for tuna fishing violations and resisting an officer.

Josh S. Howard, 31, pleaded guilty to two counts of resisting an officer, one count of intentional littering and one count of violating recreational take of tuna regulations.

Judge M. Clement of the 25th Judicial District of Plaquemines Parish accepted Howard’s guilty plea and sentenced him to forfeit his 2013 charter boat guide licenses and forbid him from acting as a charter captain for 2013.  Howard was also sentenced to a total of $850 in fines plus court costs, 32 hours of community service and two years of probation with the addition that no wildlife and fishery offenses can be committed during the time of probation.  If Howard does commit any wildlife and fishery violation during his two years of probation, he may face further revocation of charter boat licenses.

Howard’s guilty plea stems from an investigation conducted by Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries Enforcement Division agents.  LDWF agents were tipped off by confidential informants that Howard participated in the catching and retaining of a large Bluefin tuna in April of 2012 after the season had closed.

After a lengthy investigation, agents secured a subpoena for the cell phone owned by Howard where photos of the fish were believed to be stored.  When agents approached Howard with the subpoena and asked for his phone on May 18, 2012, Howard threw the phone overboard into the water thereby destroying any suspected evidence.

Howard was placed under arrest and booked into the Plaquemines Parish Jail.  Agents were able to secure a search warrant for his home in Denham Springs and seize his computer.  Howard then provided agents with photos and videos of the illegally harvested tuna.

Agents participating in the case were Sgt. Adam Young, Sgt. Roy Pier, Sgt. Louis Burnett, Senior Agents Villere Reggio and Ladd Turner and National Oceanic Atmospheric Administration Special Agent Charles Tyre.

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

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