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LDWF News Release

LWF Commission Adopts Notice of Intent to Promulgate Rules Regarding Turtle Excluder Device (TED) Penalties

Release Date: 01/07/2016

News Release

For Immediate ReleaseJanuary 7, 2016

 

Contact: Rene LeBreton
Public Information
LDWF
(504) 286-8745
rlebreton@wlf.la.gov

Today, the Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries Commission adopted a notice of intent to promulgate rules that mirror the current federal rules and regulations for turtle excluder devices.

 

This action would allow infractions concerning the illegal use of TEDs to be handled in the state courts, as opposed to the federal system. This action is similar to those that the Commission has taken to have concurrent state and federal fishery management regulations.

 

The Shrimp Task Force supported this action unanimously at their December 9, 2015 meeting.

 

To view the full notice of intent, please click here.

 

Interested persons may submit comments relevant to the proposed rule by 4:30 p.m. April 1, 2016 to Jeffrey Marx, Office of Fisheries, 2415 Darnall Road, New Iberia, LA 70560 or via email at jmarx@wlf.la.gov.

 

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

The LWFC acknowledges LDWF’s hard work regarding red snapper management

Release Date: 01/07/2016

January 7, 2016 - The Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries Commission (LWFC) adopted a resolution to commend and endorse LDWF on setting the 2016 recreational red snapper season in state waters, which begins tomorrow at 6:00 a.m.  The resolution acknowledges the work accomplished by LDWF to provide recreational red snapper anglers with additional fishing days while remaining within the states historic harvest percentage. 

The development of LA Creel (near real-time recreational harvest monitoring), the extension of state water boundaries, regional management actions at the Gulf Council, and outreach to the private recreational and charter fishing sectors are tools the agency has used to prove that the state is better suited to manage recreational fisheries.

Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries Commissioner, Billy Broussard said “LDWF, under Robert Barham’s leadership, has provided an example to state and federal fishery managers across the country, how a recreational fishery can be accountable and precisely managed.”

LDWF has recently announced a recreational red snapper season in state waters beginning January 8th at 6:00 a.m.

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

 

 

LWF Commission Sets Commercial King Mackerel Season

Release Date: 01/07/2016

(Jan. 7, 2016) - Today, the Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries Commission set the 2016 commercial king mackerel season to begin Friday, July 1.  The Commission granted the authority to the Secretary of the Department to close the season once the 2016-17 quota is met or projected to be met.
 
King mackerel is a substantial commercial fishery in Louisiana. From 2000 through 2014, Louisiana landed, on average, approximately 76 percent of the allotted western Gulf of Mexico quota.  In 2014, approximately 1,111,806 pounds were landed in Louisiana alone, with a significant portion shipped to markets in the northeastern U.S. 

AMENDED - Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries Commission Meeting

Release Date: 01/06/2016

Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries Commission Meeting

Agenda

January 7, 2016

9:30 AM

 

1.       Call to order

2.       Roll call

3.       Approval of minutes from December 03, 2015 Meeting

4.       Commission Special Announcements / Personal Privilege

5.       To hear Enforcement Reports December 2015                                                    

6.       To consider a Declaration of Emergency for Partial Closure of State Outside Waters to Shrimping

7.       To consider a Declaration of Emergency for  setting the 2016-2017 Commercial King Mackerel Season

8.       To consider a Resolution on the 2016 Recreational Red Snapper Season in Louisiana waters 

9.       To hear a presentation on the Commission’s authority to establish management targets for black drum, sheepshead and southern flounder resulting from Act 205, 2015 Legislative Session

10.    To consider a Notice of Intent to modify the Rules for Turtle Excluder Devices (TED)

11.    To consider a Notice of Intent to modify the rules for Turtle Harvest and to place a Moratorium on the Commercial Harvest of Wild Razor-backed Musk Turtle

12.    To consider a Notice of Intent to modify the Rules for Alligator Farm Facility Requirements

13.    To consider a Notice of Intent for the 2015-2016 and 2016-2017 General and WMA Hunting Seasons and Rules and Regulations, 2017 General and WMA Turkey Hunting Season and Rules and Regulations, and 2016-2017 Migratory Birds Regulations, Seasons, and Bag Limits

14.    To hear a presentation on a Cooperative Endeavor to establish a Weevil Propagation Pond in Southwest Louisiana

15.    To consider a Declaration of Emergency to close the deer hunting seasons due to the recent flooding of the Mississippi River for the specific areas of:   All lands within the Morganza floodway, from the Morganza control structure, south to I-10, and from I-10 south, within the protection levees of the Atchafalaya basin, the Sherburne WMA, the Indian Bayou Area and the Bonnet Carre Spillway

16.    To consider Rescinding the Declaration of Emergency for Partial Deer Season Closure (by Secretary Barham, effective date January 3, 2016)

17.    Election of WLF Commission Chairman and Vice-Chairman

18.    Set May 2016 Meeting Date

19.    Receive Public Comments

20.    Adjournment

Tags:

Cas Cas Road at Grassy Lake WMA Closed to Traffic Because of High Water

Release Date: 01/06/2016

Jan. 5, 2016 – The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) has closed Cas Cas Road, also known as Grand Lake Road, at Grassy Lake Wildlife Management Area (WMA) to all but ATV traffic because of high water brought on by flooding.

In addition, the Fools Bay low water crossing on North Bayou Natchitoches Road at Grassy Lake WMA has been closed because of high water.

Increasing water levels in associated river systems has caused backwater flooding on these thoroughfares. Once the water recedes and necessary repairs have been made, vehicular traffic will be allowed.
 
Grassy Lake WMA is located in northeastern Avoyelles Parish, approximately 12 miles northeast of Bordelonville.
 
For 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 .

Eleven Juvenile Whooping Cranes Released into the Marsh at White Lake WCA

Release Date: 01/05/2016

Eleven Juvenile Whooping Cranes Released into the Marsh at White Lake WCA
Eleven Juvenile Whooping Cranes Released into the Marsh at White Lake WCA
Eleven Juvenile Whooping Cranes Released into the Marsh at White Lake WCA

Jan. 5, 2016 -- Eleven juvenile whooping cranes were released into the wild last Tuesday (Dec. 29) at White Lake Wetlands Conservation Area (WCA) near Gueydan. The juvenile cranes join 35 adults that are part of an experimental population being monitored by the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF).
 
The cranes were delivered to southwest Louisiana on Dec. 3 from the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) Patuxent Wildlife Research Center in Laurel, Md.  LDWF is working cooperatively with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, USGS and the Louisiana Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Unit to establish a non-migratory population in the state.
 
The whooping crane is protected under the federal Endangered Species and Migratory Bird Treaty Acts and by state law. Anyone encountering a whooping crane is advised to observe the bird from a distance and to report their sighting to LDWF (http://www.wlf.louisiana.gov/webform/whooping-crane-reporting-form).
 
Whooping cranes are large-bodied, white birds similar to white ibis, white pelicans, and wood storks, all of which must be distinguished from legally-hunted snow geese.  However, a red head and black facial markings along with a height of five feet and a wingspan of 7-8 feet make them very distinctive.  In flight, whooping cranes display black wing tips and fully extended neck and legs, which extend well beyond the tail.
 
Juvenile whooping cranes are primarily white with some cinnamon-brown feathers remaining on their body, primarily on their head and neck. Their wing tips are black like an adult, but they lack the red head.
 
Anyone witnessing suspicious activity involving whooping cranes is advised to report that information to LDWF’s Enforcement Division by calling 1-800-442-2511 or using the tip411 program, which may offer a cash reward for information leading to arrests or convictions. To use the tip411 program, citizens can text LADWF and their tip to 847411 or download the "LADWF Tips" iPhone app from the Apple iTunes store free of charge. Citizen Observer, the tip411 provider, uses technology that removes all identifying information before LDWF receives the text so that LDWF cannot identify the sender. 
 
Additional information on LDWF’s whooping crane project is available at http://www.wlf.louisiana.gov/wildlife/whooping-cranes or on the LDWF whooping crane Facebook page (https://www.facebook.com/lawhoopingcranes/?fref=ts). For more information, contact Sara Zimorski at szimorski@wlf.la.gov or 337-536-9400, ext. 4.

Deer Hunting Closure in Atchafalaya Basin Could Come Friday Due to Rising Flood Waters

Release Date: 01/05/2016

Jan. 5, 2016 – Rising flood waters in the Atchafalaya Basin could trigger an automatic deer hunting season closure in parts of Deer Area 9 as early as Friday (Jan. 8).

The High Water Benchmark Closure, enacted by the Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries Commission in Title 76, will close deer hunting in an area of the Atchafalaya Basin in portions of Iberia, Iberville, St. Martin and St. Mary parishes when the flood gauge reaches 18 feet at Butte LaRose. That benchmark water level is expected to be reached either Friday or Saturday (Jan. 9).

The area encompasses those parishes south of I-10, west of the East Guide Levee, east of the West Guide Levee and north of U.S. 90.

The public is encouraged to monitor river levels this week prior to planning deer hunting in this area.

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

Amended Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries Commission Meeting

Release Date: 01/04/2016

Amended Agenda

January 7, 2016 9:30 AM

1. Call to order

2. Roll call

3. Approval of minutes from December 03, 2015 Meeting

4. Commission Special Announcements / Personal Privilege

5. To hear Enforcement Reports December 2015

6. To consider a Declaration of Emergency for Partial Closure of State Outside Waters to Shrimping

7. To consider a Declaration of Emergency for setting the 2016-2017 Commercial King Mackerel Season

8. To consider a Resolution on the 2016 Recreational Red Snapper Season in Louisiana waters

9. To hear a presentation on the Commission’s authority to establish management targets for black drum, sheepshead and southern flounder resulting from Act 205, 2015 Legislative Session

10. To consider a Notice of Intent to modify the Rules for Turtle Excluder Devices (TED)

11. To consider a Notice of Intent to modify the rules for Turtle Harvest and to place a Moratorium on the Commercial Harvest of Wild Razor-backed Musk Turtle

12. To consider a Notice of Intent to modify the Rules for Alligator Farm Facility Requirements

13. To consider a Notice of Intent for the 2015-2016 and 2016-2017 General and WMA Hunting Seasons and Rules and Regulations, 2017 General and WMA Turkey Hunting Season and Rules and Regulations, and 2016-2017 Migratory Birds Regulations, Seasons, and Bag Limits

14. To hear a presentation on a Cooperative Endeavor to establish a Weevil Propagation Pond in Southwest Louisiana

15. To consider Rescinding the Declaration of Emergency for Partial Deer Season Closure (by Secretary Barham, effective date January 3, 2016)

16. Election of WLF Commission Chairman and Vice-Chairman

17. Set May 2016 Meeting Date

18. Receive Public Comments

19. Adjournment

Tags:

Road Closures Set for Some Dewey W. Wills WMA Roads Because of Flooding

Release Date: 01/04/2016

Jan. 4, 2016 – The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) will close Sandy Bayou Road and Muddy Bayou Road (from Deville Crossing to Nolan Bayou Road) at Dewey W. Wills Wildlife Management Area (WMA) once the water level on Larto Lake reaches 42’ mean sea level, which is expected Thursday (Jan. 7).

In addition, Hunt Road south of the diversion canal will be closed to all traffic once the water level on Larto Lake reaches 45’ msl, which is expected Jan. 11.

Those using Dewey W. Wills WMA will be permitted to access Sandy Bayou Road with ATV/UTVs.

Increasing water levels in the Mississippi, Black, and associated river systems will create backwater flooding on these roads. Road closures are implemented in the interest of public safety. Once the water recedes and conditions allow, the roads will be reopened.

  
Dewey W. Wills WMA is located in the southern portion of LaSalle and Catahoula parishes in central Louisiana approximately 20 miles northeast of Alexandria. For more information on the WMA, go to: http://www.wlf.louisiana.gov/wma/2753 .
 
For more information, contact Cliff Dailey at 318-487-5885 or adailey@wlf.la.gov .
 

COMMERCIAL KING MACKEREL SEASON TO CLOSE JANUARY 7, 2016

Release Date: 01/04/2016

For Immediate Release

Contact:
Rene LeBreton
rlebreton@wlf.la.gov
504-286-8745

January 4, 2016

COMMERCIAL KING MACKEREL SEASON TO CLOSE JANUARY 7, 2016

 

January 4, 2016 – Today, the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) announced the commercial season for king mackerel in Louisiana waters will close at 12 p.m. (noon) on Thursday, January 7, 2016. 

The closure was made based on data gathered by LDWF biologists and the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) that the annual quota for king mackerel of 1.07 million pounds for the western zone of the Gulf of Mexico would soon be met.  The commercial fishing season for king mackerel was previously closed in federal waters at noon on Tuesday, November 17. 

Each year, a commercial quota is established for Gulf of Mexico group king mackerel by NMFS based on recommendations by the Gulf and South Atlantic Fishery Management Councils. That figure is then divided into allocations for various zones and fisheries.  According to the best information available, the 1.07 million pound commercial quota of king mackerel for the western zone of the Gulf of Mexico has been harvested, or is projected to soon be harvested.

The commercial king mackerel season in Louisiana waters has previously been closed on March 27, 2009 (08-09 season), September 12, 2009 (09-10 season), February 11, 2011 (10-11 season), September 16, 2011 (11-12 season), August 22, 2012 (12-13 season), September 20, 2013 (13-14 season), and October 31, 2014 (14-15 season).

While there are relatively few king mackerel harvested or targeted by Louisiana recreational anglers, a substantial commercial fishery exists, which typically lands 800 to 900 thousand pounds annually at Louisiana ports.  A significant portion of the king mackerel landed in Louisiana ports is shipped to markets in the northeast United States.

For more information, contact Jason Adriance at 504.284.2032 or jadriance@wlf.la.gov.  

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