LDWF News Release

L.D.W.F. To Take Part in New Anti-Littering Campaign

Release Date: 03/17/2011

L.D.W.F. To Take Part in New Anti-Littering Campaign

Photos and B-Roll footage of littering sites in Louisiana are available by contacting Adam Einck at aeinck@wlf.la.gov.

March 17, 2011 - The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) in conjunction with Keep Louisiana Beautiful (KLB) today, March 17, announced a new anti-littering slogan for the upcoming heightened enforcement for littering weekend this Friday through Sunday, March 18-20.

The new slogan of "Pick It Up or Pay It Out" will be used extensively this weekend to raise awareness of the consequences of littering in Louisiana. Pick It Up or Pay It Out is a cooperative effort of law enforcement agencies in Louisiana including the LDWF Enforcement Division, Louisiana State Police, Louisiana's Sheriff's Association and other law enforcement agencies to implement zero tolerance litter policies in their jurisdictions with increased patrols this weekend. The Office of the Lieutenant Governor and Louisiana Office of Motor Vehicles has also joined KLB in this new anti-littering campaign.

"Every time someone drops a piece of paper on the ground, throws a cigarette butt out the window, or dumps trash on abandoned land, they are trashing Louisiana for all of us," said LDWF Secretary Robert Barham. "We all think that a little bit of trash here and there isn’t a big deal, but it adds up. We are blessed to live in a state with some of the world’s most phenomenal natural and wildlife resources. Protecting Sportsman's Paradise is essential to ensuring that future generations may continue to enjoy the great outdoors throughout our state. We all have the chance to do our part."

In addition to citations and fines, Pick It Up or Pay It Out also wants to educate Louisianans of the indirect economic costs of littering including real estate devaluation, loss of new industry and business and loss of tourism and ecotourism, especially in "Sportsman's Paradise."

"As I travel the state I continue to see trash along our Interstates, state highways and local roads. We are attempting to market Louisiana as an adventure travel destination, and we must become more aggressive in our efforts to combat this problem," Lt. Governor Jay Dardenne said. "We are a state of great natural beauty that should not be marred by carelessness and disregard."

According to Keep Louisiana Beautiful, cleanup crews picked up an estimated 450,000 bags of trash in the state in 2004.

KLB Director Leigh Harris states that, "Litter costs Louisiana taxpayers well over $40 million annually. With the help of Louisiana State Police, Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries, the Louisiana Sheriff's Association and the Lieutenant Governor's Office, we hope Louisiana citizens become even more aware of the legal consequences associated with littering."

Littering in Louisiana can result in fines from $50 to $5,000. Those who litter can also expect to serve between four and 10 hours of community service, suspension of their driver's license for one year and even the possibility of jail time for up to 30 days. LDWF Enforcement Division agents issued 1,001 littering citations for fiscal year 2009-10 and logged 7,958 patrol hours for littering enforcement.

LDWF also took over the state's 1-888-LITRBUG (1-888-548-7284) hotline last June. Citizens can call the hotline to report people that litter and littering sites to the department for further investigation. Since June 1, the Enforcement Division has received 731 calls.

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.

About Keep Louisiana Beautiful
Keep Louisiana Beautiful is a volunteer-based service organization dedicated to a healthy and litter-free Louisiana. Through a network of affiliate communities statewide, KLB promotes its mission to educate Louisianans on the ecological and economic effects of littering. For more information, visit www.keeplouisianabeautiful.org. Find us on Facebook “Keep Louisiana Beautiful” and follow us on Twitter @keeplabeautiful.

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

LDWF Schedules Public Meetings to Discuss Proposed Regulation Changes

Release Date: 03/16/2011

Anglers are encouraged to provide their input regarding changes to Louisiana and Texas’s bordering waters

March 16, 2011 - The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries will host three public meetings to present proposed recreational harvest regulations for freshwater game fish on the waters of the Toledo Bend Reservoir, Caddo Lake and Sabine River. The proposed regulations were developed in an effort to establish uniform regulations governing Louisiana and Texas’s bordering waters.

Public comment will be taken on all items under consideration by the Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries Commission through May 5. The meeting dates and locations include:

  • April 4 at 7 p.m., SRA Office, 15091 Texas Hwy, Many, LA
  • April 5 at 7 p.m., LDWF Office, 9961 Hwy. 80, Minden, LA 
  • April 7 at 7 p.m., LSU Ag Center, 7101 Gulf Hwy, Lake Charles, LA

To view the full notice of intent and all proposed regulations changes, visit our website at http://www.wlf.louisiana.gov/proposedregulations. Public comment will be accepted through May 5 and can be submitted directly to Ashley Wethey at awethey@wlf.la.gov, or by mail at P.O. Box 98000, Baton Rouge, LA 70898-9000.

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)765-5113.

Grass Carp Used to Combat Aquatic Weeds

Release Date: 03/15/2011

5,000 Triploid Grass Carp stocked into Spring Bayou in Avoyelles Parish

March 15, 2011 - Biologists with the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries recently stocked Spring Bayou with triploid grass carp as part of a continued effort to help control unwanted aquatic vegetation.

This is the second installment of grass carp into this complex of shallow sloughs, bayous and lakes. A stocking of 11,000 carp was made in early 2008. Unfortunately, desired results were not achieved due to the effects of Hurricane Gustav that included extensive fish kills.

Aquatic vegetation control in the system was once naturally achieved by water level fluctuations of the Red River, but a dam installed on Little River in 1955 stabilized water levels and curtailed backwater flooding. The absence of water fluctuation, combined with the introduction of the invasive aquatic plant hydrilla, has created the need for extensive control measures.

Dredging, water manipulation and herbicides have all been used with limited success.

Control by use of grass carp was reserved until all other methods were given ample opportunity.

While use of a biological control measure is an attractive alternative to drawdowns or the long-terms use of expensive herbicides, success using this control method is variable. Potential flood events may allow many of the stocked carp to escape the system.

Triploid grass carp are sterile, thus eliminating the concern of the species forming breeding populations in the Spring Bayou or neighboring water systems. However, the risk is that remaining numbers may not be adequate to control the vegetation problem. “At this stage, when boaters aren’t even able to use the complex, we’re willing to try it,” said Mike Wood, LDWF Director of Inland Fisheries.

The stocking was a cooperative effort of the Avoyelles Parish Police Jury, Spring Bayou Restoration Team and Avoyelles Wildlife Federation. The effort received strong support from Sen. Eric LaFleur and Rep. Robert Johnson.

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)765-5113.

Hunting and Fishing Advisory Education Council Scheduled to Meet March 15, 2011

Release Date: 03/10/2011

The Hunting and Fishing Advisory Education Council will meet Tuesday, March 15 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 Louisiana Room is as follows:

  1. Roll Call
  2. Approval of Minutes of December 7, 2010
  3. Welcome and Opening Comments Chairman
  4. Wildlife Division Report: Proposed Hunting Seasons, Regulations Changes
  5. Enforcement Division Report
  6. Office of Fisheries: Rigs to Reefs Program
  7. Office of Management and Finance: Conservation Fund Update
  8. Coastal and Nongame Resources Division: NRDA – Natural Resource Damage Assessment
  9. Sector Separation Discussion Chairman
  10. Set Next Meeting Date
  11. Receive Public Comments
  12. Adjournment

For more information, contact Bo Boehringer at 225-765-5115 or bboehringer@wlf.la.gov.

LDWF Reminds Turkey Hunters that Tags and Harvest Reporting are Required for the 2011 Season

Release Date: 03/10/2011

March 10, 2011- The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) is reminding hunters that tags must be in possession by all turkey hunters regardless of age during the upcoming 2011 turkey season that opens March 19. Turkey hunters are also reminded that harvested turkeys must be tagged prior to being moved from the site of harvest. Also of extreme importance for the proper management of the species, each tagged turkey must be reported by phone (1-866-484-4805) or internet (www.la.wildlifelicense.com).

If you haven’t hunted since last year’s turkey season, remember these details:

When in the field, and immediately upon harvesting a turkey, the hunter must:

  • Tag the turkey with the appropriate Carcass Tag from the license before it is moved and document the kill on the Harvest Report Card portion of the turkey tag.
  • Record the date of kill and the parish of kill on the Carcass Tag.

When transporting the harvested turkey:

  • The tag must remain attached to the turkey while kept at camp, or while it is transported to the domicile of the hunter.
  • If a successful hunter wishes to divide their game with other hunters, a possession tag must be used.
  • Possession Tags are printed in the of the 2010-11 Louisiana Hunting Regulations booklet, or can be downloaded via the LDWF Web site, and document the identification of the hunter who harvested the turkey. Correctly completed Possession Tags identify the hunter responsible for the carcass and allow anyone to transport the meat legally.

Within 72 hours of the harvest of each turkey, the hunter must:

  • Validate the kill by toll-free phone at 866-484-4805 or via the Internet at https://www.la.wildlifelicense.com .
  • Record the confirmation number obtained by phone or Internet on the Harvest Report Card.

Additionally: Hunters are advised not to remove the Carcass Tags from the Turkey Harvest Report Card until a turkey is harvested. Single tags are automatically voided if detached from the license prematurely, not placed on a harvested turkey, and then lost by a hunter. Duplicate tags will be available to replace lost tags at a charge to the hunter. Hunters must record validated turkey on the duplicate turkey tag.

Anyone purchasing a license by phone or the Internet will be given both an authorization number and a LDWF identification number that will serve as their temporary license until the actual license arrives by mail. Hunters must tag turkeys using any piece of paper with legibly written authorization number and LDWF identification number, along with the hunters name, address, date and parish where the turkey was taken. This will serve in lieu of the absent carcass tag. Hunters will maintain documentation of any harvested turkey and will validate any harvested turkey as required by law when the hunter’s actual license is received. The hunter will validate the license information from any harvested turkey and will discard the license tags for those validated turkey. NOTE: Hunting license purchases by phone or the Internet will include a handling fee, as will turkey tag requests by Lifetime license holders, Resident Seniors and hunters under age 16.

A complete listing of all rules pertaining to turkey season and tagging is provided in the 2011 Louisiana Turkey Regulations pamphlet which can be downloaded at http://www.wlf.state.la.us/publication/turkey-regulations-2011. To view an instructional video on turkey tagging, click on the link provided on the LDWF Web site home page at www.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 more information, contact Jimmy Stafford at 225-765-2361 or jstafford@wlf.la.gov .

L.D.W.F. Agents Find Body of Missing Man in Vermilion River

Release Date: 03/10/2011

March 10, 2011 - Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) Enforcement Division agents found the body of a missing man in the Vermilion River in Lafayette at 10:15 a.m. on March 10.

Senior Agent Nick Guillory, Agent Jake Darden and Agent Justin Lowry were on patrol when they located the deceased body of Mitch Jackson, 39, of Rayne, in the Vermilion River behind 200 Farmington Road in Lafayette.

Jackson had been missing since Friday, March 4 after he was involved in a five-car accident on Ambassador Caffery Parkway in Lafayette and left the scene. He then drove his vehicle to the local Home Depot and locked the vehicle with his cell phone and medications for high blood pressure inside.

He was last seen on surveillance video entering and leaving a few stores on Ambassador Caffery Parkway before disappearing.

After locating the body, LDWF agents contacted the Lafayette Parish Sheriff's Office (LPSO) and Lafayette Police Department (LPD), who then arrived on scene to recover the body and conduct an investigation. Jackson's body is now at the Lafayette Coroner's Office.  An official cause of death is not available at this time.

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

Dewey Wills W.M.A. Road Closure

Release Date: 03/10/2011

March 10, 2011 - A portion of Muddy Bayou Road from Saline Bayou, eastward to Nolan Bayou Road, has been temporarily closed to automobile traffic on the Dewey Wills Wildlife Management Area (WMA) in LaSalle Parish, effective March 9. The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) closed that section of road due to high water from recent rainfall.

The road will be reopened when water recedes and the roadway dries sufficiently to allow for vehicular traffic.

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 more information on the road closure, contact Steve Smith at 318-487-5885 or ssmith@wlf.la.gov.  

L.D.W.F. Agents Rescue 32 People in Tangipahoa Parish

Release Date: 03/09/2011

March 9, 2011 - Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) Enforcement Division agents rescued 32 people on March 8 in Tangipahoa Parish from flooding conditions due to severe rainfall.

LDWF agents responded to a call around 7 p.m. of a vehicle that got swept off of Lewiston Road east of Kentwood into Big Creek. Sgt. Toby Miller and Senior Agent Brody Roberts launched a shallow drive vessel into the creek and were able to pull a female and her young daughter from the rooftop of the vehicle. Agents reported there was only about 6 inches of the vehicle above the water when the rescue was made.

LDWF agents then received a call around 8 p.m. from the Kentwood Fire Department of two trailer parks that flooded in Tangipahoa. By 12:30 a.m. on March 9, Sgt. Miller, Senior Agent Roberts and Sgt. Darryl Galloway were able to rescue 30 people from the two trailer parks again using a shallow draft vessel. Agents reported the water was above the skirting of the trailers. Agents also rescued two dogs and two horses.

Agents brought the rescued people to Hwy. 51 where emergency personnel from Acadian Ambulance, Tangipahoa Sheriff's Office, Tangipahoa Police Department and the Kentwood Fire Department were on standby. Emergency personnel then transported the rescued people to a shelter in Kentwood. Between all of the emergency personnel that responded, over 100 people were rescued from trailer parks and roadways on the night of March 8.

"These three agents responded in a very quick and efficient manner, which is required for any search and rescue mission," said Col. Winton Vidrine, head of the LDWF Enforcement Division. "Enforcement agents are well equipped and trained for search and rescue missions as they have the trucks and vessels to get to remote areas that flood and have numerous hours of swift water and first aid training."

LDWF agents will remain on standby statewide and also assist with local emergency responders as severe weather is expected to continue throughout the day.

The LDWF Enforcement Division is the primary agency for search and rescue in the state and the Governor’s Office of Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness (GOHSEP) designated lead for search and rescue operations. LDWF agents have several decades of experience in boating safety enforcement, maritime patrol enforcement and maritime search and rescue.

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

Gulf States Marine Fisheries Commission and NOAA Begin Regional Survey of the Economic Contributions of Saltwater Angling

Release Date: 03/09/2011

March 7, 2011 - The Gulf States Marine Fisheries Commission (GSMFC) and NOAA are surveying saltwater anglers across the Gulf of Mexico to update and improve estimates of the overall economic contributions of saltwater recreational fishing to the Gulf and U.S. economy. This study is part of the 2011 National Marine Recreational Fishing Expenditure Survey.

“This is the kind of new and enhanced information that will help several levels of recreational fisheries of the Gulf of Mexico,” said Larry Simpson, GSMFC Executive Director.

NOAA, GSMFC, and the saltwater angling community need timely economic data to help evaluate the economic importance of recreational fishing activities. The data will give a more updated look at the economic effects of fishing regulations and changes in the ecosystem caused by natural or manmade events such as the Deepwater Horizon oil disaster. The information gathered in the survey will contribute to more informed decisions on a variety of recreational fishing issues.

NOAA and the GSMFC will survey a random sampling of the approximately 3 million saltwater anglers in the five Gulf states and Puerto Rico. The survey will include a random sampling of people who fish from shore, docks, party or charter boats and privately owned boats. Surveying began in January and will continue throughout the year in Florida, Alabama, Mississippi, Louisiana, and Puerto Rico. It will begin in Texas in March and April. This is NOAA’s and GSMFC’s second survey focusing on how much saltwater anglers spend on their sport throughout the Gulf region.

GSMFC and its state partners will ask anglers how long their fishing trips last and how much they spend on bait, boat fuel, ice, charter fees and other expenses. Anglers will also be asked to participate in a follow-up survey that will ask them to estimate what they spent on durable goods such as boats and fishing tackle used for saltwater angling for the previous 12 months. Those who participate in both parts of the survey will help NOAA and GSMFC produce accurate economic information.

Economists from NOAA’s Fisheries Service and the GSMFC as well as state partners are assisting with the 2011 survey. Once the economic data are collected, they will be analyzed and released as a NOAA report. The most recent economic study in 2008 showed that anglers’ expenditures generated more than $12 billion in sales and supported more than 113,000 jobs throughout the Gulf region.

The GSMFC’s principal objectives include the conservation, development, and full utilization of the fishery resources of the Gulf of Mexico in order to provide food, employment, income, and recreation to the people of these United States.

CONTACT: Alex Miller
GSMFC Economist 
Sabrina Lovell
NOAA Economist
301.713.2328 x101

L.D.W.F. Opens New Air Gun Range at Waddill Outdoor Education Center in Baton Rouge

Release Date: 03/04/2011

The new Waddill Outdoor Education Center air gun range provides 12 shooting stations under a covered firing line.
Targets at the Waddill Outdoor Education Center air gun range are staged at 10 and 20-meters distances.
LDWF Secretary Robert Barham and NWTF Regional Biologist Luke Lewis at Waddill O.E.C. air gun range ribbon cutting

March 4, 2011 – The public now has access to a new air gun shooting range at the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries’ (LDWF) Waddill Outdoor Education Center in Baton Rouge. Ribbon cutting ceremonies were held Feb. 25 at the site.

“This project is a wonderful example of a cooperative partnership involving the National Wild Turkey Federation’s Louisiana Chapter and the department,” said LDWF Secretary Robert Barham. “This is where the education process begins for young hunters or those who want to become competitive shooters.”

Range construction was funded by a $5,000 donation from NWTF’s La. Chapter that was matched with LDWF Hunter Education funds. The site provides 12 shooting stations with a covered firing line that is handicap-user accessible. The range, which can be used for air rifle, air pistol and BB gun target shooting, offers 12 targets at 10 meters and four targets at 20 meters, and was designed for use in official competitions.

This new air gun range adds to the outdoor activities available at Waddill that include fishing ponds, an archery range, field archery trail, walking trails and picnicking areas. The on site education center is also used for hunter education classes.

Those attending the Feb. 25 gun range ribbon cutting were also able to view a new footbridge providing easier access to the archery range. A senior project completed by Baton Rouge Magnet High School student John Parham Murrill, the bridge fulfills the student’s goal of giving back to the community.

The Waddill Outdoor Education Center is located at 4142 North Flannery Road and is open to the public Tuesday through Saturday from 7:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. Access to the site, including the new shooting range, is free of charge.

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 more information on the programs and facilities available at Waddill, contact Wayne Huston at 225-274-8192 whuston@wlf.la.gov.

For video of the new air rifle range dedication ceremony, please visit: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cBolzuavH_8

or click the following link:

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