LDWF News

LDWF News Release

Road Closures Possible for Dewey W. Wills WMA Roads Due to Flooding

Release Date: 06/01/2017

June 1, 2017 – 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 feet mean sea level (msl), which could happen in the coming days.
 
Increasing water levels in the Mississippi, Black and associated river systems have created backwater flooding on these roads. Once the water recedes to 40 feet msl 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 .
 

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Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries Announces 2018 Louisiana Duck Stamp Competition

Release Date: 06/01/2017

The 2017 Louisiana Duck Stamp, submitted by Richard Clifton

June 1, 2017 – The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) has announced the rules and timeframe for the 2018 Louisiana Waterfowl Conservation Stamp or Louisiana Duck Stamp competition.
 
“Canvasback will be the featured species in this year’s competition,” said Larry Reynolds, LDWF Waterfowl Program Manager.
 
Traditionally referred to as the “King of Ducks”, canvasbacks are large, fast-flying diving ducks that winter in large numbers on Catahoula Lake and the deltas of the Atchafalaya and Mississippi rivers. Nearly every year, Louisiana hunters harvest more canvasbacks than any other state in the Mississippi Flyway. With a bag limit of only one or two per day, canvasbacks have long been prized for their size, speed, striking appearance and culinary quality. Many hunters travel to Louisiana specifically for the opportunity to take a big “bull can” over decoys.
 
The 2017 contest was restricted to designs featuring green-winged teal. Richard Clifton’s mesmerizing painting of a resting trio continued a long tradition of excellent stamp designs. The Louisiana Waterfowl Conservation Stamp bearing that design went on sale June 1.
 
The 2018 contest will be restricted to designs with canvasback as the focal species.  Artists are also reminded of the requirement for associated habitat.
 
“The primary objective of this program is to provide revenue to create, enhance and maintain habitat for waterfowl and associated wetland wildlife,” Reynolds said, “so a habitat component is required in each entry and is one of the five judging criteria.”
 
To enter, an artist must submit an original, unpublished work of art, along with a signed and notarized artist's agreement and a $50 entry fee.  Entries should be addressed to:
 
Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries
Attn: Louisiana Waterfowl Conservation Stamp Program
2000 Quail Drive
Baton Rouge, LA 70808
 
Entries will be accepted from Oct. 16-Oct. 24, 2017, with the contest to be held in the Louisiana Room at the LDWF Headquarters building, beginning at 10 a.m. on Oct. 25, 2017.  The public is invited to attend.
 
To fill out the 2018 Louisiana Waterfowl Conservation Stamp competition artist agreement and see the full list of rules, go to http://www.wlf.louisiana.gov/hunting/2018-louisiana-duck-stamp-contest.
 
The Louisiana Legislature authorized the Louisiana Waterfowl Conservation Stamp program in 1988. The program was created to generate revenue for conservation and enhancement of waterfowl populations and habitats in Louisiana. During the last 25 years, more than $12.5 million has been generated for wetland conservation with approximately $6 million spent on land acquisition. In addition, revenue has supported wetland development projects on Wildlife Management Areas and the Louisiana Waterfowl Project, a cooperative endeavor between LDWF, Ducks Unlimited, the Natural Resources Conservation Service and U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to provide habitat for waterfowl and other wetland birds on private lands.
 
Judging for the art competition will be based on the following criteria:
 
1. Accuracy of form, size, proportion, color and posture.
2. Level and accuracy of detail in all aspects of the waterfowl.
3. Appropriateness, accuracy and detail in depiction of the habitat.
4. Attractiveness and creativity in composition, subject, background and lighting.
5. Suitability for reproduction as stamps and prints.
 
A panel of judges with experience in waterfowl biology and/or artistic method will select the winning design. The competition is open to all artists 18 years of age and older. Employees of LDWF and members of their immediate families are ineligible.
 
For more information, contact Larry Reynolds at 225-765-0456 or lreynolds@wlf.la.gov.
 
 

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LDWF Closes Several Roads on Richard K. Yancey WMA Due to Flooding

Release Date: 05/26/2017

May 26, 2017 – The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) has closed several roads on the Richard K. Yancey Wildlife Management Area due to flooding. The roads include Hog Pen Lake Road, Dobbs Bay Road, Goose Lake Road, Ross Road, Hooper Road, Lac A’Sostein Road and all roads on the east side of the Mississippi River Levee within the WMA.
 
Once the water recedes and necessary repairs have been made to restore roads to safe condition, roads will be reopened.
 
Richard K. Yancey WMA is located in Concordia Parish, approximately 35 miles south of Ferriday on Louisiana Hwy. 15.
 
For more information on this WMA, go to http://www.wlf.louisiana.gov/wma/36994. For more information, contact Tony Vidrine at 337-948-0255 or tvidrine@wlf.la.gov  or Cody Haynes at jhaynes@wlf.la.gov

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LDWF Closes Grassy Lake WMA Interior Access Roads Due to Flooding

Release Date: 05/26/2017

May 26, 2017 - The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) has closed all interior access roads at Grassy Lake Wildlife Management Area due to flooding from recent heavy rain.
 
Once the flooding recedes, LDWF will reopen the closed portion of the road if able to restore safe travel conditions.
 
Grassy Lake WMA is located in northeastern Avoyelles Parish, approximately 12 miles from Bordelonville.
 
For more information, go to http://www.wlf.louisiana.gov/wma/2767 or contact Tony Vidrine or Cody Haynes at 337-948-0255 or tvidrine@wlf.la.gov or jhaynes@wlf.la.gov.

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LDWF to Host Kids Fishing Day Camp June 13-16 at Woodworth Outdoor Education Center

Release Date: 05/25/2017

May 25, 2017 – The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries will host a Kids Summer Fishing Day Camp on June 13-16 at the Woodworth Outdoor Education Center located near Alexandria in Rapides Parish. The camp, for children ages 10-15, will be held from 8 a.m.-4 p.m. each day.
 
The registration fee is $75 and registration deadline is May 30. To obtain a registration form, go to www.wlf.louisiana.gov/2017fishingdaycamp .
 
Participants will learn several angling techniques in addition to fishing each day. Other activities include how to rig fishing equipment, fish identification, boating safety, casting and lure selection. Each participant will receive a rod/reel combo and stocked tackle box.
 
For more information, contact Dustin Champagne at 318-484-2183 or dchampagne@wlf.la.gov or Theresa Cross at 337-491-2575 or tcross@wlf.la.gov.

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LDWF to Hold Informational Meeting on Urban Foxes June 7 in Lafayette

Release Date: 05/25/2017

May 25, 2017 – The Louisiana Department and Wildlife and Fisheries will hold an informational meeting on urban foxes and nuisance wildlife control June 7 (Wednesday) at 6:30 p.m. in Lafayette. The meeting will be held at the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service/NOAA Building conference room located at 646 Cajundome Blvd. in Lafayette.
 
The presentation will provide information on fox biology and behavior in urban areas of Louisiana, citizen science and Fox Finders' research results and nuisance wildlife control regulations. LDWF biologists and Dr. Linda Hooper-Bùi, an associate professor with LSU’s Department of Environmental Sciences, will field questions regarding urban foxes and control of nuisance wildlife on private property.   
 
Foxes have adapted to living in urban and residential areas and can sometimes cause concern for citizens unfamiliar with living with wildlife. This meeting will detail how to deal with foxes and other wildlife that make their homes in urban areas. 
 
For current LDWF nuisance wildlife information, go http://www.wlf.louisiana.gov/wildlife/nuisance-wildlife .
 
For additional information regarding the meeting, contact Melissa Collins, LDWF Wildlife Biologist, Permits Coordinator, at mcollins@wlf.la.gov or 225-763-8584.

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Louisiana Oyster Task Force Public-Private Oyster Grounds Committee to Meet May 30

Release Date: 05/25/2017

Tuesday, May 30, 2017, 9:30 A.M.
UNO Advanced Technology Center
2021 Lakeshore Drive, Suite 210
New Orleans 70122
 
AGENDA
 
  I.             Call to Order
 II.             Discussion of Recommendations RE: Oyster Seed Grounds Vessel Permit  
                     Training Requirements- Richard Williams
III.             Discussion of Recommendations and Changes to the Oyster Lease Acquisition
                     Program- Duncan Kemp
IV.             Discussion of Moratorium Lifting Draft NOI
 V.             Public Comment
VI.            Set next meeting
VII.           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/7855256698368997634
 
The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries is committed to accommodating all
reasonable special requests regarding access to our meetings. Please direct all sign
language interpreting services or other accommodation needs to the contact at the top of
this announcement at least 72 hours prior to the meeting date. 

Gov. Edwards Announces Management Pilot Program to Provide More Access to Red Snapper in State, Federal Waters

Release Date: 05/25/2017

May 25, 2017 - Gov. John Bel Edwards announced Thursday (May 25) that the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) plans to conduct an innovative pilot program designed to help recreational anglers battling short seasons for red snapper in federal waters.
 
The two-year pilot program will incorporate the use of handheld technology to produce real-time data on what anglers are catching. Additionally, anglers won’t have to fish their limit during a particular season. They will be able chose what days are best for them to go fishing.
 
Edwards, who has consistently supported state management of Gulf waters, said, “I asked Wildlife and Fisheries to develop a program that could eventually lead to Louisiana controlling red snapper fishing, even in what is determined to be federal waters. This pilot program could not come soon enough as the federal government has limited anglers to just three days to fish red snapper this year.”
 
LDWF Secretary Jack Montoucet said, “Just like the governor, we have heard from anglers across Louisiana and it is clear what they want most is the flexibility to fish for red snapper when it makes sense for them and their families. So we are going to test a new way of doing this. Instead of using a season, we are going to try giving fishermen a set number of red snapper that they can catch in federal waters and ask them to record that data on their smartphone.”
 
The pilot program – to be in operation in 2018-2019 - is the linchpin of LDWF’s Exempted Fishing Permit Application for State Management Pilot Project (or EFP). It has been delivered to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and is expected to be deliberated by the Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council at its next meeting in June.
 
Here’s how the EFP program will work. There will be 150 study participants selected by random drawing and subsequently contacted by e-mail. They will have the choice of accepting or refusing to participate. If that angler declines, then another one will be chosen at random. The participants would be able to catch 25,000 pounds of red snapper per year. The anglers would have to abide by the federal size limit. The EFP program would have no daily bag limit and the total limit per EFP participant would be determined by the number of fish allocated to each participant.
 
What this program is attempting is several fold, Montoucet said. “We are trying to show we can scientifically monitor the red snapper caught in the federal waters, provide anglers with more days of access to the fish and allow them to make larger catches. And most importantly, the state wants to show that we can use state-of-the-art-technology to safely control the red snapper population on our own.”
 
Participants in the pilot program will be recording the fish they catch and throw back on their smart phone and with that real-time data. Using that information, LDWF will ask the federal government to increase the amount fish allotted to private anglers in the future.
 
“As a fisherman myself,” Edwards said, “that sounds like a lot better system than squeezing all of my red snapper fishing into June when there might be bad weather or when family obligations can get in the way.”
 
To see the complete proposal and other parts of LDWF’s larger red snapper management program, go to http://www.wlf.louisiana.gov/document/documents.
 

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Get Hooked During Free Fishing Weekend in Louisiana

Release Date: 05/24/2017

The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries invites you to take part in its annual Free Fishing Weekend on Saturday, June 10 and Sunday, June 11. Louisiana’s Free Fishing Weekend is an opportunity for Louisiana residents and visitors alike to fish Louisiana waters without an otherwise required fishing license. So, leave your cash and credit card at home – the only thing you’ll need for a great time is your lure and line.
 
“Each year, we designate a weekend of free fishing as an incentive for families and friends to get outside and enjoy our beautiful Sportsman’s Paradise,” explained Secretary Jack Montoucet. “Whether your interest is saltwater or fresh, Louisiana offers some of the best and most diverse fishing opportunities in the world, and we welcome you to become part of the long-standing tradition of Louisiana fishing. 
 
While a fishing license is not required, all fishing regulations, including size, season, catch limits and gear restrictions will remain in effect.
 
With the exception of free fishing weekend, anglers 16 and older must possess a Louisiana fishing license when fishing in any Louisiana public waters. Louisianians who decide to continue fishing the remainder of the year are invited to purchase a state fishing license at https://www.la.wildlifelicense.com/start.php.
 
By purchasing a fishing license you also help provide funding for public fishing and boating access, fishing programs and education and fisheries management through the Sport Fish Restoration Fund.

 

Sam C. Barbera III Named Assistant Executive Director of Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries Foundation

Release Date: 05/24/2017

Sam C. Barbera III

May 24, 2017 – Sam C. Barbera III, a Thibodaux native who has spent the past three years working for the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF), has been named assistant executive director of the Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries Foundation (LWFF).
 
Barbera, 49, will begin his duties as assistant director in two weeks and will succeed LWFF Executive Director Kell McInnis later this year. McInnis has served as executive director since May 15, 2006.
 
Though only working for LDWF since October of 2013, Barbera has navigated Louisiana waterways since he was a boy growing up in the state. Prior to coming to LDWF, he was co-host of BIGFISH Television in New Orleans. From 2001-2011 he worked for the Coastal Conservation Association of Louisiana, serving as STAR tournament director and assisting with fundraising events.
 
Barbera is a U.S. Army veteran. His last assignment was commander of the 239th Military Police Company in Baton Rouge, the first Louisiana Army National Guard unit called to active duty after 9/11.
 
At LDWF, Barbera assisted with a variety of fisheries research projects, including the Louisiana Cooperative Marine Fish Tagging Program and the Lake Pontchartrain Acoustic Telemetry Project. He also helped with the department’s artificial reef development/deployment activities and biological monitoring. In addition, he worked with fisheries extension, including numerous outreach events, fishing seminars and as the Louisiana Saltwater Series tournament director.
 
“To be selected as assistant executive director for this organization is humbling,’’ said Barbera, a graduate of Nicholls State University in Thibodaux. “For many years, I’ve seen firsthand the job LWFF has done and the various contributions it has made not only to LDWF but also to the citizens of the state who love and enjoy all Louisiana outdoors has to offer. The core mission of LWFF is to enhance and encourage public enjoyment and use of the wildlife and fisheries resources of Louisiana. I’ll work tirelessly to make sure we continue that mission.’’
 
“Sam’s extensive knowledge of the outdoor industry in Louisiana, coupled with his fund-raising ability and organizational skills, makes him the perfect candidate to oversee the Foundation,’’ said LWFF President John W. Barton, Jr. “We look forward to him growing the efforts Kell McInnis has built on through the years as executive director.’’
 
LWFF, a non-profit public charitable foundation, was created in 1995. Its goals are to aid the department in habitat conservation, youth recruitment, environmental education and training, natural resource research and management, regulation enforcement and financial assistance to LDWF programs.
 
The Foundation receives no public funding and depends entirely upon contributions from individual and corporate donors. Encouraging cooperation and support for LDWF programs is the major focus of LWFF, accomplished by connecting people and businesses with Louisiana’s natural resources.
 
Some of the programs LWFF assists with include Archery in Louisiana Schools, Becoming an Outdoor Woman, Get Out & Fish!, Louisiana Wetland Protection, Youth Hunter Education Challenge, the Louisiana Black Bear restoration, the VHF Tower Project, WETSHOP and the Whooping Crane restoration project.
 
To donate to the Foundation or to volunteer, go to www.lawff.org or call 225-765-5100
 

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