L.D.W.F. News

L.D.W.F. News Release

LDWF Schedules Drawdown for Black-Clear Lake

Release Date: 06/11/2014

(June 11, 2014) – The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries will initiate a drawdown on Black-Clear Lake near Campti on July 1, 2014, in an attempt to improve fisheries habitat and control nuisance aquatic vegetation.
 
Although recent surveys show plant coverage levels are lower than previous years, they are expected to increase during the coming months.  The expectation of increased plant coverage coupled with a drawdown request from the Northwest Game and Fish Commission has prompted the Department to take action.
 
Drawdown recommendations include a dewatering of 2 to 4 inches per day until the lake reaches a level of 4.5 feet below pool stage.  Following a 60-day drying period, the control gates may be operated for minor water fluctuations to isolate additional plants.  The gates will be closed no later than January 31, 2015, to allow the lake to refill.
 
The lake will not be closed to fishing during the drawdown, but caution is advised of boaters during the low water period, as boat lanes will not provide normal clearance for underwater obstructions.  During the drawdown, an estimated 9,600 acres of water will remain in the lake.  Boaters will be able to access the lake from the following public boat launches: Black Lake Lodge, Chandler’s, West Wind and Sandy Point.
 
The upcoming drawdown is part of the Department’s comprehensive management plan for Black-Clear Lake.  Additional control recommendations include herbicide treatments and use of biological control agents including triploid grass carp and giant salvinia weevils.
 
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, on Facebook at www.facebook.com/ldwfffb or follow us on Twitter @LDWF.
 
For additional information regarding the drawdown, contact Ricky Yeldell, LDWF Biologist Manager, at ryeldell@wlf.la.gov or (337) 286-5940.  For press inquiries contact Ashley Wethey at awethey@wlf.la.gov or (225) 721-0489.

Free Fishing Weekend Draws Crowds to LDWF Family Fish Fest

Release Date: 06/10/2014

Free Fishing Weekend Draws Crowds to LDWF Family Fish Fest
Free Fishing Weekend Draws Crowds to LDWF Family Fish Fest

(June 10, 2014) – During this weekend’s annual Free Fishing Weekend, the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries held its third Family Fish Fest at Myrtle Grove Marina.  The event was a great opportunity to introduce children to the joys and excitement of a day on the water catching fish.  Not only is fishing a great family activity, it helps make us more aware of our natural environment.

Participants enjoyed a fun-filled day of fishing and event winners took home loads of prizes.

Launched earlier this year, Family Fish Fest events are designed to increase youth and family involvement in fishing and fisheries conservation.  Each event includes fishing opportunities with live redfish and speckled trout tagging at all saltwater locations.

Saturday’s event included a mobile touch tank, fish identification, knot tying lessons, cast net lessons, casting tutorials, LDWF mascot Robbie the Redfish and arts and crafts.

Winners include Little Angler Redfish first place, Maddie Schieble; second place, Mark Wilson, III; Team Wham Slam first place, Mark Wilson, Sr.; Team Catch-N-Count first place, Beverly Squarsich; Team Crab Grab first place, Kira Stevens.  Additional prizes were given to those who brought in extra live redfish and trout to be tagged by the Department as part of the Louisiana Cooperative Marine Fish Tagging Program.

Saturday’s event sponsors included CCA Louisiana, Pure Fishing, Dufrene Building Materials, Myrtle Grove Marina, Plaquemines Parish Government, Whole Foods, SeaTow, Coon Neck Wildlife and Art Gallery, New Orleans Zephyrs, Hyatt Regency of New Orleans, Faux Pas Prints and Marsh and Bayou Outfitters. 

Our next Family Fish Fest, hosted in partnership with the Coastal Conservation Association Specks and Spots Tournament, is scheduled for June 28 at the Quintana Pavilion at Cypremort Point State Park.   Family Fish Fest activities will be held from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m.  Participants who bring in a live speckled trout or redfish to be tagged and released will receive a raffle ticket with the chance to win numerous prizes.  Adults will receive an additional raffle ticket for each youth entered.

LDWF Family Fish Fest is hosted in conjunction with the Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries Foundation.  The LWFF was formed to provide a means for individuals and corporations to become partners with the Department and Commission in the challenge of conserving Louisiana’s wildlife and fisheries resources. 

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, 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.

LDWF Enforcement Division Welcomes 13 New Agents at Graduation

Release Date: 06/10/2014

LDWF Enforcement Division Welcomes 13 New Agents at Graduation

The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) Law Enforcement Academy today, June 10, graduated its 27th class of cadets into the ranks of LDWF Enforcement Division agents at a ceremony in Baton Rouge.

After six months of intensive physical and academic training at the academy, 13 newly commissioned agents are ready to begin enforcing hunting, fishing and boating regulations that govern the use of the state's natural resources.

LDWF Secretary Robert Barham, the keynote speaker at the ceremony, said, “You have a tremendous responsibility to protect Louisiana’s rich natural resources and those who enjoy those resources, whether in the field or on the water.  Congratulations on your achievement which we celebrate today.”  Barham further noted that, “These 13 cadets are very much needed to help bolster the ranks of agents in the state as this is our first graduation in over three years.”

Col. Joey Broussard, head of the LDWF Enforcement Division, presented certificates and recited the Oath of Office making the cadets’ transition to commissioned agents official.  “We welcome these cadets into the Enforcement Division ranks.  They are well trained and will be required to hit the ground running when they get to their local regions.”

The 13 new agents are:

Todd Abshire, 25, of Lake Charles, assigned to Cameron Parish
William Bartlett, 28, of Slidell, assigned to Plaquemines Parish
Richard Bean, 27, of Marrero, assigned to Lafourche Parish
Jeffrey Farmer, 26, of New Orleans, assigned to Jefferson Parish
Lance Fox, 26, of Pineville, assigned to Southern Strike Force
Joshua Harris, 24, of Farmerville, assigned to Northern Strike Force
John Hattaway, 23, of Bastrop, assigned to Northern Strike Force
Lucas Hidalgo, 26, of Franklin, assigned to Southern Strike Force
Jake Hoover, 24, of Albany, assigned to Beauregard Parish
Kyle Wagner, 24, of Destrehan, assigned to St. Charles Parish
Derek Ware, 24, of Sieper, assigned to Sabine Parish
Tyler Wheeler, 22, of Monroe, assigned to Northern Strike Force
Max Wilkinson, 24, of Marksville, assigned to West Feliciana Parish

During the graduation ceremony, Farmer received the firearms award given for the best marksman in the class and the physical training award for being the most fit.  Fox received the academic award for having the highest grades.  Farmer also won the overall award, which is a cumulative score from the firearms, academic and physical training categories.

At the academy, cadets train to enforce the state's recreational boating laws, the state and federal wildlife and fisheries laws and general law enforcement work on the state's many wildlife management areas.  The academy also covers general law enforcement training equal to that of other state law enforcement officers.

The graduating agents fill vacancies in LDWF’s Enforcement Division and will be assigned to a field-training officer for their first six months of duty.  Now part of the agency’s commissioned officer staff, the agents will join the ranks of those patrolling land and water to primarily detect game, fish and boating law violations.  These duties require travel into Louisiana's forests, swamps, fields, streams, bayous, lakes, marshlands, the Gulf of Mexico and on the state roadway system.

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

Photo: First Row from Left to Right: Lance Fox, Jeffrey Farmer, Todd Abshire, John Hattaway, William Bartlett, Richard Bean, and Derek Ware.  Back Row from Left to Right: Col. Joey Broussard, Joshua Harris, Tyler Wheeler, Jake Hoover, Kyle Wagner, Max Wilkinson, Lucas Hidalgo, and Major Spencer Cole.

LDWF Fish Tagging Workshops Introduce Women to the Sport of Fishing

Release Date: 06/10/2014

LDWF Fish Tagging Workshops Introduce Women to the Sport of Fishing
LDWF Fish Tagging Workshops Introduce Women to the Sport of Fishing

(June 10, 2014) – This year, nearly 50 women have joined the ranks of experienced anglers in Louisiana by participating in the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries Women’s Fish Tagging Workshops.  The two workshops were held at the Cabela’s in Gonzales where the ladies learned how to rig their own rod and reel, fishing tactics, how to properly tag a fish, methods of cleaning fish and identification of fish native to Louisiana.

The Coastal Conservation Association of Louisiana sent each of the participants home with their own rod and reel, and several of the wining raffle winners brought home new fishing gear courtesy of Cabela’s and CCA Louisiana. 

The Department strives to inspire people to learn about and enjoy the outdoors.  The Women’s Fish Tagging Workshops, one of the many outreach programs LDWF sponsors, are designed to do just that.  The goal is to provide women with hands-on education and experience from trained staff and volunteers.

The program is open to women 18 and older who have in interest in fishing and conservation but have not had the opportunity to learn the skills and techniques needed to begin fishing.  LDWF and Cabela’s have partnered to hold several of these one-day workshops.  Those who participate in the workshops are eligible to enter a lottery for fishing trips, allowing them to practice the techniques they learned. Participants are also given the opportunity to be paired with a fisheries biologist and boat captain to further their fishing experience and help them to one day become confident enough to fish on their own.

LDWF is charged with managing and protecting Louisiana’s abundant natural resources.  For more information, visit us at www.wlf.la.gov, and on Facebook at www.facebook.com/ldwffb or follow us on Twitter @LDWF.

For press inquiries, contact Ashley Wethey at awethey@wlf.la.gov or (504) 286-8733.

LDWF To Hold Law Enforcement Academy Graduation Tuesday, June 10

Release Date: 06/09/2014

EVENT:  27th Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) Law Enforcement Academy Graduation.

WHEN:  Tuesday, June 10, 2014 - 10 a.m.

WHERE:  Louisiana Room, LDWF Headquarters Building, 2000 Quail Drive, Baton Rouge, LA 70808.

BACKGROUND:  The graduation will add 13 new agents to the LDWF Enforcement Division following six months of training.  The event will include the presentation of colors by the LDWF Enforcement Color Guard, presentation of awards and the Oath of Office ceremony.

LDWF agents enforce hunting, fishing and boating regulations that govern the use of the state's natural resources.  Their duties include checking hunters, fishers, dealers, restaurants, breeders, farmers and transporters for compliance with regulations governing limits, quotas, licenses, sizes, registrations, legal documents and accepted behavior.  Agents are also trained for search and rescue and maritime security missions.

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

Commission Hears Report on 2014 Dove Season Rules and Regulations

Release Date: 06/09/2014

June 9, 2014 – The Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries Commission received a report on the upcoming dove season at their June 5 meeting in Baton Rouge.

The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries’ (LDWF) Wildlife Division, based on information collected in a spring dove hunter survey and the US Fish and Wildlife Service’s new harvest strategy, is planning a 2014 dove season that will include:

  • A 90-day season which adds 20 additional days to hunt doves in Louisiana
  • A north zone with three splits including Sept. 6 – 28; Oct. 11 – Nov. 9; and Dec. 10 – Jan. 15 (the first split provides an extra seven days and the third split provides an extra 13 days more than previous seasons)
  • A south zone with three splits including Sept. 6 – 14; Oct. 11 – Dec. 3; and Dec. 20 – Jan. 15 (the second split provides an extra 10 days and the third split provides an extra 10 days more than previous seasons)
  • Opening dove hunting hours at one-half hour before sunrise on all dates in each split

The Commission will finalize the 2014 dove season dates at their July 3 meeting.

LDWF’s spring survey received 438 responses from hunters who shared their experiences and opinions about dove hunting on topics including season dates, hunting activities, hunting success, ammunition used, and demographic variables.

For more information, contact Dr. Jeff Duguay, LDWF Wildlife Division, at jduguay@wlf.la.gov or 225-765-2353.

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.

 

Bluewing Teal Featured Species in 2015 Duck Stamp Contest

Release Date: 06/09/2014

June 9, 2014 -- The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) has announced the rules and timeframe for the 2015 Louisiana Waterfowl Conservation Stamp, or Louisiana Duck Stamp competition.

Blue-winged teal will be the featured species in this year’s competition. Bluewings are the earliest migrants in the fall and some of the last migrants through Louisiana in the spring.  Over the past 5 years, blue-winged teal have been the second most abundant species in the bags of Louisiana waterfowl hunters. Blue-winged teal also graced the first Louisiana Waterfowl Conservation stamp back in 1989.

“Hunters anticipate their arrival in time for the September teal season, and enough bluewings stick around to become an important part of the regular duck season as well,” said LDWF Waterfowl Study Leader Larry Reynolds.

During the past five years of open Duck Stamp contests, artists could submit paintings of a species of their choice, except for previous winners. This rule generated outstanding participation and high-quality entrants, and winners including Tony Bernard’s white-fronted geese on the 2014 stamp.

Artists are reminded of the requirement for associated habitat in each entry since the primary objective of this program is to provide revenue to create, enhance, and maintain habitat for waterfowl and associated wetland wildlife. The habitat component 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 Monday, October 13 through Tuesday, October 21, 2014 with the contest to be held in the Louisiana Room at the LDWF Headquarters building starting at 10 a.m. on Wednesday, October 22, 2014.  The public is invited to attend.

Please visit this link to obtain the 2015 Louisiana Waterfowl Conservation Stamp competition artist agreement and see the full list of rules:

http://www.wlf.louisiana.gov/hunting/2015-louisiana-duck-stamp-contest

The Louisiana Legislature authorized the Louisiana Waterfowl Conservation Stamp program in 1988.  The program was created to generate revenues for conservation and enhancement of waterfowl populations and habitats in Louisiana.  During the last 23 years, over $11 million has been generated for wetland conservation with approximately $5 million spent on land acquisition.  In addition, revenues have 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.

 

Abbeville Men Arrested for Falsely Claiming Reimbursement Money

Release Date: 06/06/2014

Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) Enforcement Division agents arrested two Louisiana fishermen on June 5 for allegedly trying to falsely claim reimbursement money from LDWF.

Agents arrested Christopher T. Cao, 46, and Tam V. Nguyen, 52, both of Abbeville, for injuring public records and filing false public documents.

According to the arrest warrants, both men filed a Shrimp Refrigeration Cost-Share Program Application with LDWF in an attempt to receive 50 percent monetary reimbursement for equipment upgrades on their shrimping vessels.  Participants in this program may purchase and install advanced refrigeration equipment onboard their vessels in order to produce high-quality seafood products.

According to the arrest warrant, Cao recreated and altered a purchase receipt for a $12,340 generator.  Further investigation revealed that the generator was not installed on the vessel and was originally purchased for a different vessel.  He attempted to collect $6,170 from LDWF.

Nguyen also altered a purchase receipt for a $12,340 generator which was purchased for a different vessel.  He altered an additional $7,991 worth of purchase receipts for various equipment and supplies, which were purchased for other vessels as well.  Further investigation revealed that the vessel had existing generators, but they did not correlate with any of the paperwork.  He attempted to collect $10,165.50 from LDWF.

Both subjects were booked into the East Baton Rouge Parish Jail.

Injuring public records and filing false public documents each carry up to a $5,000 fine and five years in jail for each offense.

Senior Agent Michael Marques, of the Southern Strikeforce, is assigned to the case.

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

Commission Resolution Adds Acreage to WMAs

Release Date: 06/05/2014

June 5, 2014 – The Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries Commission today adopted a resolution that adds acreage to Dewey Wills and Little River Wildlife Management Areas (WMAs).
 
Dewey Wills WMA’s new 265 acres have been added through a cooperative management agreement with the US Army Corps of Engineers (USACOE). That addition increases Dewey Wills to 63,901 total acres that also includes land owned by LDWF and the LaSalle Parish School Board. Dewey Wills includes portions of LaSalle, Rapides and Catahoula Parishes.
 
Little River WMA in Grant, LaSalle and Rapides Parishes will add 1,109 acres through a separate USACOE cooperative agreement and the WMA will contain 5,951 total acres.
 
The Commission’s resolution procedure is part of the formal regulatory process that must be followed in the establishment of WMAs. LDWF manages over 1.5 million acres of public land for outdoor recreation use. For more information on the state WMA program, visit http://www.wlf.louisiana.gov/wma .
 
For more information, contact Steve Smith at 225-765-2359 or 318-487-5885, or ssmith@wlf.la.gov .

LDWF Reminds Charter Captains about Federal Reef Fish Permit Requirements

Release Date: 06/05/2014

June 4, 2014 – The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries would like to clarify the permit requirements for charter boat captains fishing for reef fish in state and federal waters. 
 
Any vessel being operated as a charter or headboat and landing reef fish in Louisiana is required to have a valid federal charter vessel / headboat reef fish permit, regardless of where these fish were caught (state or federal waters).  This permit must have been issued to the vessel and must be on board the vessel and in immediate possession.  Additionally, a valid Louisiana charter boat license shall be in the possession of the captain.   
 
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 please contact Rene LeBreton at rlebreton@wlf.la.gov or (504) 286-8745.

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