LDWF News

LDWF News Release

Thibodaux Man Sentenced as Repeat Duck Hunting Offender

Release Date: 03/11/2015

Two Louisiana Men pleaded guilty in Federal Court on March 10 in Orleans Parish for duck hunting violations that occurred in 2014.

Judge Joseph Wilkinson Jr. sentenced Lloyd Badeaux, 67, of Thibodaux, and Bobby Chauvin, 76, of Theriot, to each pay a $560 fine for violating non-toxic shot requirements while duck hunting.  Badeaux was also sentenced to serve 30 days in jail for violating his hunting ban from a previous hunting conviction.

Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries Enforcement Division agents first cited Badeaux for taking over the limit of ducks in January of 2012 in Terrebonne Parish.  Agents found Badeaux 48 black bellied whistling ducks over his daily limit.  Badeaux pleaded guilty to the charge in April of 2013 and was fined $5,010 and placed on three years of probation with no hunting.

Prior to the opening of the 2014/15 migratory game bird season, LDWF agents with U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) agents received information that Badeaux would be duck hunting on opening weekend.  On Nov. 15, 2014, LDWF and USFWS agents set up surveillance where Badeaux was thought to be hunting in Terrebonne Parish near Dularge.

The agents found Badeaux actively hunting ducks in a duck blind and made contact with him and Chauvin.  Agents found that both subjects were in possession of lead shot shotgun shells while hunting migratory game birds.

Agents cited both men for violating non-toxic shot requirements.  Badeaux was also cited for violations of his federal probation.

Agents involved in the case were LDWF Sgt. Thomas Dewitt, and Senior Agents Dean Aucoin, Stephen Rhodes and Thomas Wolf.

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

Two Men Cited for Changing Freshness Dates on Seafood Packages

Release Date: 03/10/2015

Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries Enforcement Division agents cited two men for alleged commercial seafood labeling violations on March 4 in Orleans Parish.

Agents cited Sean Delaune, 26, of New Orleans, for misbranding seafood packages and Thomas Smith, 49, of Darien, Georgia, for conspiring to misbrand seafood packages.  Agents seized 14,850 pounds of mahi-mahi filets from the men.

During an inspection of the Gulf Atlantic Fisheries seafood wholesalers in New Orleans, agents observed packages of mahi-mahi filets being repacked from one bag labeled for retail sale into another bag labeled for retail sale.  Further inspection of the two bags showed the major difference between the bags was the "best by" dates.

The bags that had the mahi mahi filets had a best by date of  September of 2013 being repackaged into bags with May of 2016 best by dates.

Louisiana law prohibits acts that are falsely represented using any mark, stamp, tag, label or other authorized information.

Misbranding seafood brings up to a $1,000 fine and up to one year of imprisonment.  Conspiring to misbrand seafood brings up to a $500 fine and up to six months of imprisonment.  Further punishment is the loss of the product that totaled 14,850 pounds of mahi mahi filets.

Agents participating in the case are Sgt. Edward Ridgel, Sr. Agents Michael Williams and Michael Marques and Lt. Louis Burnett.  Further citations may be pending.

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

LDWF Agents Arrest Man In Connection with Cut Down Trees on Spring Bayou WMA

Release Date: 03/06/2015

Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries Enforcement Division agents arrested a Hessmar man this morning, March 6, for his alleged involvement in the cutting down of trees on the Spring Bayou Wildlife Management Area (WMA) in Avoyelles Parish.

After conducting their investigation and receiving an anonymous tip, agents arrested Rick K. Savoy, 48, at his residence for criminal damage to state property.  He was also arrested for operating an All-Terrain Vehicle (ATV) off of a WMA ATV trail, not complying with WMA self-clearing permit regulations and interference with navigation.

LDWF found up to 100 trees cut down on the WMA since early December of 2014.  Agents believe the trees were cut down to block navigation to the northern part of the WMA in order to keep other hunters out of the area.  The trees blocked all three entrances to an area known as the “Bean Field” in the northwest corner of the WMA.

The trees ranged from 10 inches to 30 inches in diameter and up to 50 foot tall including cypress, oak and willow trees.

LDWF agents booked Savoy into the Avoyelles Parish Jail in Marksville.

The penalty for cutting down trees on a WMA is criminal damage of state property and brings up to a $10,000 fine and up to 10 years in jail.  There may also be a civil restitution charge for the replacement value of the trees and cleanup required.

Operating an ATV off of a WMA ATV trail and failing to comply with self-clearing permit WMA regulations each brings a $100 to $350 fine and up to 60 days in jail.  Interference with navigation carries a $50 fine and to 15 days in jail.

Agents involved in the case are Lt. John Volentine, Sgts. Gabe Guidry, Chad Watts and Bear Fletcher, and Senior Agents Doug Anderson Jr., Jay Callegari, Heath Wood, Kurt Hatten, Dale Wheat, Kenny Robertson and John Hattaway.  Avoyelles Parish Sheriff’s Office Deputy Matthew Smith and Detective Jeremiah Honea also assisted in the case.

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

Commission Adopts Notice of Intent to Amend the Proposed Rule Addressing Vessel Restrictions on Biloxi WMA

Release Date: 03/05/2015

March 5, 2015 -- The Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries Commission (LWFC) adopted a notice of intent today to amend the proposed rule on vessel restrictions on Biloxi Wildlife Management Area in St. Bernard Parish.
 
The amendment, as proposed by the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF), reads as follows:
 
“Mud boats or air-cooled propulsion vessels can only be powered by straight shaft “long tail” air-cooled, mud motors that are 25 total horsepower or less on the WMA. All other types of mud boats or air cooled propulsion vessels (including “surface drive” boats) are prohibited.”
 
The original NOI had set the maximum total power limit at 16 hp. The rule change was proposed in an effort to reduce marsh damage and erosion on the property. To view the amended notice of intent, please visit http://www.wlf.louisiana.gov/action-items .
 
Interested persons may submit written comments relative to the proposed rule change to Steve Smith, LDWF Wildlife Division, Post Office Box 98000, Baton Rouge, LA 70898-9000, or ssmith@wlf.la.gov until 4:30 p.m. on April 1, 2015.
 
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.

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New Iberia Man Charged with Illegal Killing of Louisiana Black Bear

Release Date: 03/05/2015

Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries Enforcement Division agents cited a New Iberia man for allegedly killing a Louisiana black bear on Feb. 28 in St. Mary Parish.

Agents received a call from a hunting group that Richard A. Picard Jr., 52, illegally shot and killed a Louisiana black bear while he was hog hunting.

Picard Jr. was hog hunting with a group of hunters near Cypremort Point when he shot a 350 pound Louisiana Black Bear.  Picard Jr. claims to have mistakenly identified the black bear as a wild hog.

He shot the five year old male bear with buckshot from his 12 gauge shotgun.  Agents seized Picard Jr.’s shotgun and issued him a citation for killing the bear.

Killing a Louisiana Black Bear brings a $900 to $950 fine and up to 120 days in jail.  Picard Jr. also faces up to $10,000 civil restitution for the replacement value of the black bear.

Hunters are advised to always identify their targets before pulling the trigger for any wildlife they may be hunting.

Agents involved in the care are Senior Agent Joey Thompson, Senior Agent Jake Darden, Senior Agent Jason Marks and Senior Agent Cullom Schexnyder.

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

OYSTER SEASON TO OPEN IN A PORTION OF THE PUBLIC GROUNDS

Release Date: 03/05/2015

March 5, 2015- Today, the Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries Commission approved a Declaration of Emergency to open the oyster season in a portion of the public oyster seed grounds east of the Mississippi River and north of the Mississippi River Gulf Outlet, including Lake Borgne and Mississippi Sound, at one-half hour before sunrise on March 16, 2015 through one-half hour after sunset on March 31, 2015.  This area was originally scheduled to open on October 20, 2014, but was delayed to protect a successful spatfall event in the area.  During the period of this opening, and only in this portion of the public oyster seed grounds, no sack limit and no sacking-only area shall be in effect. The 2013 cultch plants located in Drum Bay and 3-Mile Pass shall remain closed.

To view a detailed map of this area click here

The Commission authorized Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries’ Secretary Robert J. Barham to take emergency action to close areas, on an as-needed basis, based on biological data or if enforcement problems are encountered.  The Secretary was also authorized to take emergency action to reopen areas previously closed if the threat to the resource has ended and to open areas if substantial oyster resources are located. 

Public notice of any opening, delay, or closure of a season will be provided at least 72 hours prior to such action, unless such closure is ordered by the Louisiana Department of Health and Hospitals for public health concerns.

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 Ashley Roth at 504-286-4162 or aroth@wlf.la.gov

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Mississippi Man Arrested for Possession of Stolen Personal Watercraft

Release Date: 03/05/2015

Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries Enforcement Division agents arrested a Mississippi man for alleged possession of stolen property on March 3.

Agents arrested Donald Juan, 36, of Picayune, Miss., after finding him in possession of two stolen personal watercrafts and a trailer that belonged to a New Orleans man.

The personal watercrafts and trailer were reported stolen in the summer of 2013.  LDWF agents received an anonymous tip that the stolen watercrafts were located in Slidell in St. Tammany Parish in February of 2015.

After further investigation, agents were able to trace the personal watercrafts back to Juan.  Agents booked him into the St. Tammany Parish Jail and seized the personal watercrafts and trailer.

It is unknown at this time who was responsible for stealing the personal watercrafts and trailer in 2013.  Agents believe that Juan fully knew they were stolen when he acquired the stolen property.

Possession of stolen property brings up to a $3,000 fine and up to 10 years in jail.

Agents involved in the case are Senior Agent Michael Marquez and Mike Williams.

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

Shrimp Task Force Meeting

Release Date: 03/04/2015

The following is the agenda for the Louisiana Shrimp Task Force Meeting. The public is invited to attend.

Tuesday, March 10, 2015, 1 p.m.

LDWF Headquarters, Louisiana Room

2000 Quail Drive, Baton Rouge

 

AGENDA

I.  Roll call and introduction of guests

II.  Approval of August 6 meeting minutes and March 10 agenda

III.  Treasury Report

   A.  Budget Report-LDWF

IV.  Old Business

  A.  Gulf-wide seafood certification

  B.  Inside/Outside shrimp line

  C.  Refrigeration grant program

  D.  Federal shrimp permit status

V.  New Business

  A.  Trip tickets as a financial document

  B.  Shrimp hatcheries

  C.  LDWF enforcement issues

  D.  Imported shrimp issues

    a.  Subsidy case status

    b.  Legislation for increased inspections

    c.  Increased import volume

VI.  Public Comment

VII.  Set Next Meeting

VIII.  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 listen in to the meeting via webinar register at https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/7669940592505340930

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.

 

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Spring Brings Family Fishing Action at LDWF's Family Fish Fests

Release Date: 03/03/2015

(March 3, 2015) - With spring just around the corner, the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries announced they will again host a series of Family Fish Fest events across the state.  In its second year, this program provides a unique opportunity for families to learn fishing basics and participate in activities to increase fishing knowledge and skill. 
 
The first 50 registrants for each event will receive a complimentary rod and reel, and the first 100 registrants will receive a fishing goodie bag.  Competitive categories are available for nearly all legal fish species, and every participant is automatically entered into a raffle for outdoors prizes courtesy of event sponsors.
 
Entry for each event is $10 per participant (except for the September 26 event), and includes a t-shirt and lunch.  Participants must provide their own fishing equipment and bait.  Events will begin shortly after sunrise and will conclude by noon.
 
The competition portion of each event will include divisions for all ages and fishing categories for multiple species, with a boat division at locations that have launch access.  Live redfish and speckled trout will be tagged and released by LDWF biologists in conjunction with the Louisiana Cooperative Marine Fish Tagging Program at all saltwater locations. 
 
Outside of the competitive arena, numerous additional outdoor activities will be available, including a mobile touch tank, fish identification, fish ageing, knot tying, casting tutorials and arts and crafts.  Robbie the Redfish, LDWF’s fish tagging mascot, will be onsite for photo opportunities and to greet guests.
 
Event information and pre-registration are available at www.wlf.la.gov/familyfishfest.
 
Mark your calendar for our 2015 Family Fish Fests:
 
April 11, 2015: Louisiana Oil & Gas Park – Jennings, La.
May 16, 2015: Ivan Lake Recreation Area – Cotton Valley, La.
June 13, 2015: Myrtle Grove Marina – Myrtle Grove, La.
July 11, 2015: Elmer’s Island – Grand Isle, La.
September 26, 2015: National Hunting & Fishing Day at Waddill Wildlife Refuge – Baton Rouge, La.
 
The 2015 Family Fish Fest series is made possible by the following sponsors: CCA Louisiana, Pure Fishing, Dufrene Building Materials, Jeff Davis Parish Tourist Commission, Myrtle Grove Marina, Friends of Grand Isle, The Angler Magazine, Coon Neck Wildlife and Art Gallery, Faux Pas Prints, Marsh and Bayou Outfitters and Emprint Moran Printing.
 
Family Fish Fests are also made possible by the help of dedicated volunteers who devote time to share their fishing expertise with event participants.  Volunteering with the department provides an opportunity to share your passion for fishing and other outdoor activities with anglers of all ages and levels of experience.  If you are interested in becoming a volunteer, please email outreach@wlf.la.gov.
 
The series is hosted in conjunction with Pure Fishing, CCA Louisiana and the Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries Foundation. 
 
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.la.gov, on Facebook at www.facebook.com/ldwffb or follow us on Twitter @LDWF.
 
For more information and sponsorship opportunities, contact Danica Williams at dwilliams@wlf.la.gov or (504) 628-7282.  For press inquiries, contact Ashley Wethey at awethey@wlf.la.gov or (225) 721-0489.

Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries hosting Louisiana Fisheries Forward Summit in Houma

Release Date: 03/02/2015

(March 2, 2015)  The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) together with their partners at Louisiana Sea Grant and LSU AgCenter are excited to present Fisheries Forward 2015, the third annual summit for Louisiana commercial fishermen and the seafood industry.

The free summit will be held on March 11 at the Houma-Terrebonne Civic Center from 8 a.m. until 5 p.m.  This year’s summit topics include; the future of Gulf seafood; information on LDWF programs, including the Louisiana Fisheries Forward program and crab industry professionalism program; and oyster fishery weights and measures.  This year’s hand-on demonstrations include a Coast Guard Helicopter rescue, proper turtle-excluder device installation and the new wing trawling system.

A fishermen’s input session will provide attendees the opportunity to interact with the program and provide live, anonymous feedback concerning fishery and seafood issues.  There will also be a trade show featuring organizations that provide products or services to those involved in the commercial fishing and seafood industry.

There is no charge to attend the summit and complimentary lunch will be provided to all attendees.   Advance registration is encouraged at LouisianaFisheries.com.  For more information about the summit email summit@lsu.edu.

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

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

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