LDWF News

LDWF News Release

Galliano Man Cited for Black Drum Fishing Violations

Release Date: 02/02/2015

A Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries Enforcement Division agent cited a Galliano man for alleged fishing violations on Jan. 31 on the Pointe-aux-Chenes Wildlife Management Area (WMA).

Senior Agent Michael Marques cited Rufino Gonzalez-Ibarra, 34, for taking and possessing over the legal limit of black drum, possessing undersized black drum and possessing undersized red drum.

While on patrol, Senior Agent Marques found Gonzalez-Ibarra in possession of 26 black drum and one red drum, all of which were under the minimum size of 16 inches.  The legal limit for black drum is five per person per day making Gonzalez-Ibarra four times over the legal limit.

Possessing over the legal limit of black drum and possessing undersized black drum and red drum each brings a $100 to $350 fine and up to 60 days in jail for each offense.

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

AGENDA FOR COMMISSION MEETING

Release Date: 01/30/2015

The next regular Commission Meeting will be held at 9:30 AM on Thursday, February 5, 2015, at the Wildlife and Fisheries Headquarters Building located at 2000 Quail Drive, Baton Rouge, LA

The following items will be discussed:

  1. Roll Call
     
  2. Approval of Minutes of January 8, 2015
     
  3. Commission Special Announcements/Personal Privilege
     
  4. To Hear Enforcement Reports January 2015
     
  5. To hear the Stock Assessment reports for Striped Mullet, Black Drum, Southern Flounder, and Sheepshead 
     
  6. To consider final approval of the Notice of Intent for the Catch and Cook program
     
  7. To consider  amending the Notice of Intent for the Louisiana Fisheries Forward Program Crab Gear Requirements
     
  8. To consider a Notice of Intent for 2015-16 Season Dates and Rules/Regulations for the Game and Fish Preserves
     
  9. To hear public comment updates on the 2016-2017 Hunting Seasons Notice of Intent
     
  10. To Hear a Presentation of LDWF’s Louisiana Black Bear Management Plan
     
  11. Set June 2015 Meeting Date
     
  12. Receive Public Comments
     
  13. To consider holding an executive session, pursuant to R.S. 42:17(A)(10), to discuss the Louisiana Legislative Auditor confidential  preliminary report on Louisiana Oyster Lease Practices.”
     
  14. To consider a response to the Louisiana Legislative Auditor confidential preliminary report on Louisiana Oyster Lease Practices
     
  15. Adjournment

A live audio stream is available for the February 2015 - LWF Monthly Commission Meeting.  To access the live audio stream on February 5th, please register at:

https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/3822432746948177154

After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the webinar.

Brought to you by GoToWebinar®

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L.D.W.F. Public Meetings Set for February on Proposed Hunting Seasons, W.M.A. Rules and Regulations Changes

Release Date: 01/27/2015

Jan. 27, 2015 -- The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) will host seven public meetings around the state to gather comments on the proposed 2015-17 resident game hunting season dates, wildlife management areas (WMA) general rules, and regulation changes and the 2016 turkey season and turkey hunting areas.

Public comment will be taken on all items currently under consideration as notices of intent by the Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries Commission through April 2. The meeting dates and locations include:
 
Feb. 23 - 6:00 p.m., LDWF Outdoor Education Center, 661 Robinson Bridge Road, Woodworth
Feb. 24 - 6:00 p.m., Ruston Civic Center, 401 North Trenton Street, Ruston
Feb. 24 - 6:30 p.m., LSU Ag Center, 7101 Gulf Highway, Lake Charles
Feb. 24 - 6:30 p.m., Natchitoches Event Center, 750 Second Street, Natchitoches
Feb. 25 - 6:00 p.m., Caldwell Parish Courthouse, 201 Main Street, Columbia
Feb. 25 - 6:00 p.m., Opelousas Civic Center, 1638 Creswell Lane, Opelousas
Feb. 26 - 6:30 p.m., Slidell Municipal Auditorium, 2056 2nd Street, Slidell

To view the full notices of intent and all proposed hunting season dates and regulations changes, visit http://www.wlf.louisiana.gov/action-items .

Public comment will be accepted at LWFC monthly meetings from now through April 2 or may be submitted directly to Steve Smith, LDWF Wildlife Division, PO Box 98000, Baton Rouge, LA 70898-9000, or via email to ssmith@wlf.la.gov .

For more information, contact Steve Smith at 225-765-2359 or ssmith@wlf.la.gov .
 

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Three Louisiana Residents Cited for Deer Hunting Violations

Release Date: 01/27/2015

Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries Enforcement Division agents cited three Louisianans for alleged deer hunting violations on Jan. 24 in Tangipahoa Parish.

Agents cited Brandon McElveen, 27, of Mt. Hermon, Todd Sigrist, 47, of Kentwood, and Rainey Thibodeaux, 33, of Kentwood, for hunting without basic hunting and big game licenses, no possession of deer tags, taking deer using illegal methods, taking over the daily limit of deer and possession of illegally taken deer.  McElveen and Sigrist were also cited for taking deer during illegal hours, hunting from a moving vehicle, hunting from a public road and taking over the yearly limit of deer.

Agents additionally cited McElveen for discharging a firearm from a public road.  Sigrist was additionally cited for illegal possession of a firearm by a convicted felon, driving under suspension and possession of untagged deer.  Thibodeaux was also cited for not wearing the required amount of hunters orange clothing.

Agents seized 11 deer and two rifles in the case.

From Jan. 13 to Jan. 23 agents received many public tips about night hunting activities taking place in the Kentwood Springs Creek area.  After setting up surveillance in the area and investigating the complaints further, agents learned that it might be Sigrist who was night hunting.

Agents went to Sigrist’s residence on Jan. 24 and saw a freshly killed deer hanging from a tree in the yard in plain view.  After talking to some family members, agents received permission to look around in the yard.  After a brief search, agents found six ice chests with 10 deer quartered up inside.  When Sigrist arrived home, agents questioned him about illegal night hunting activities in the area.  Sigrist said he was present when the deer were taken illegally during the past 10 days by Thibodeaux and McElveen.

Thibodeaux admitted to taking her deer during legal shooting hours, but using a rifle below the required .22 caliber center fire requirement.  McElveen also admitted to killing seven deer at night during illegal shooting hours from a public road.  None of the subjects possessed deer tags, basic hunting or big game licenses.

Illegal possession of a firearm by a convicted felon carries a $1,000 to $5,000 fine and 10 to 20 years in jail.  Driving while under suspension brings up to a $500 fine and six months in jail.

Taking deer during illegal hours carries a $900 to $950 fine and up to 120 days in jail.  Possession of illegally taken deer brings a $400 to $950 fine and up to 120 days of jail.  Taking deer using illegal methods, taking over the daily and yearly limits of deer, possession of untagged deer and hunting from a moving vehicle each carries a $250 to $500 fine and up to 90 days in jail.  Not possessing deer tags, discharging a firearm from a public road and taking deer from a public road each brings a $100 to $350 fine and up to 60 days in jail.  Hunting without basic hunting and big game licenses and not wearing the required amount of hunters orange each brings a $50 fine and up to 15 days in jail.

The three subjects may also face up to $17,870 in civil restitution charges for the replacement value of the illegally taken deer.

Agents involved in the case are Lt. Cullen Sellers, Sgt. Toby Miller and Senior Agent Lee Davis.

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

Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries Announces 2015 Derelict Crab Trap Cleanup

Release Date: 01/26/2015

Fishermen reminded of Crab Trap Closures and Volunteers Needed

 

(Jan. 26, 2015) The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries will host the 2015 Derelict Crab Trap Rodeo on Saturday, February 21 from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the Johnson’s Bayou boat launch located off of Highway 563 on Deep Bayou Road in Cameron Parish.  The 2015 derelict crab trap cleanup will be conducted jointly with the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department and focuses on shared waters within Sabine Lake.

The Derelict Crab Trap Removal Program was initiated by LDWF in 2004 to address removal of derelict and abandoned crab traps.  The traps increase ghost-fishing mortality of blue crabs and other species captured incidentally, interfere with other commercial fishing gear types, create navigation hazards, and reduce visual appeal of our environment.  The volunteer-based program is funded through commercial fishermen gear fees and since its inception has disposed of more than 24,000 derelict crab traps.

Area Closure

In order to conduct the trap cleanups, licensed crab fishermen received a notice informing them that they must remove their crab traps from within the closure area during the closure period, and all remaining crab traps will be considered abandoned and may be removed by agency personnel or volunteers.  For a map of the closure area click here.

Volunteers

LDWF encourages volunteers to participate in this opportunity to remove abandoned traps and conserve Louisiana’s marine resources.  Volunteers are needed to assist with dockside activities such as unloading and stacking traps. The greatest need is for volunteer boat owners to help maximize trap collection. 

In order for LDWF to better coordinate volunteer activities, volunteers are encouraged to register in advance at the following website https://www.surveymonkey.com/s/CrabTrapRodeo2015

LDWF representatives and partners will be available at Johnson’s Bayou boat launch beginning at    8 a.m. to distribute instructions, maps, and supplies to volunteers, assist with the unloading of derelict traps, and document the number of traps removed. In case of inclement weather, the event will be rescheduled for Saturday, February 28.

This event is made possible through the support of CCA Louisiana, Audubon Institute, Louisiana Sea Grant, LSU AgCenter, the Crab Task Force and Raising Canes.

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, please contact Melissa Crouch at 225 765-2923 or mcrouch@wlf.la.gov or Martin Bourgeois 985 594-4139 or mbourgeois@wlf.la.gov

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

 

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Port Sulphur Man Pleads Guilty To Oyster Fishing Violations

Release Date: 01/23/2015

A Port Sulphur pleaded guilty on Jan. 22 in Plaquemines Parish to commercial fishing violations.

Nelson C. Williams III, 39 pleaded guilty for taking commercial fish without a commercial license, taking commercial fish without a vessel license, taking oysters from unleased state water bottoms, violations of the states sanitation code and a third offense of taking oysters from an unapproved area.

Judge Kevin Conner with the 25th Judicial District sentenced Williams to pay a fine of $2,799 including court costs and 210 days of jail suspended.  He also sentenced Williams to 40 hours of community service in a parish litter abatement program, revoked his 2015 commercial oyster licenses and that he have a vessel monitoring system installed on any vessel he harvests oysters for period of one year.

The guilty plea stems from an incident that occurred on Feb. 8, 2014 when Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries Enforcement Division agents found Williams harvesting oysters in an area closed to pollution near Port Sulphur.  Upon further investigation Williams had no licenses for that year and also had not filled out his log book as required by law.

Jerry Lobrano with the District Attorney Charles Ballay’s office prosecuted the case.

Agents involved in the case were Sgts. Adam Young and Villere Reggio.

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

Louisiana Oyster Task Force Legislative Committee Meeting

Release Date: 01/23/2015

Tuesday, January 27, 2015, 10 a.m.

UNO Advanced Technology Center, 2021 Lakeshore Drive, Suite 210, New Orleans

 

AGENDA

I.  Roll Call and introduction of guests

II.  Discuss proposed 2015 legislation

     A.   Establishing a Public Seed Ground Damage Evaluation Board

     B.   Oyster Lease Moratorium

III.  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/3386371932735272449

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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Louisiana Crab Task Force Meeting

Release Date: 01/23/2015

Tuesday, January 27, 2015,1:00 p.m.

UNO Advanced Technology Center

2021 Lakeshore Drive, Suite 210

New Orleans, Louisiana 70122

 

AGENDA

I.  Roll Call and introduction of guests

II.  Approval of January 27 agenda and September 30 meeting minutes

III.  Financial Report

IV.  Old Business

   A.  Legislative Committee Meeting report

   B.  Professionalism Program Update-LDWF

   C.  Crab Stock Assessment-LDWF

V.  New Business

    A.  Blue Crab Management Plan-LDWF

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 join the meeting via webinar register at https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/5692814175671735298

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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Two Louisiana Men Cited for Migratory Game Bird Violations

Release Date: 01/23/2015

Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries Enforcement Division agents cited two Louisiana men for alleged migratory game bird violations on Jan. 18 in Acadia Parish.

Agents cited Matthew Castile, 34, of Lafayette, and Jeremy Soileau, 32, of Ville Platte, for over the limit of ducks, wanton waste of migratory game birds and failing to comply with personal flotation device (PFD) regulations.

Agents observed Castile and Soileau hunting from a pirogue on Bayou Mallet and Agents saw Castile exit the pirogue from the Bayou just before Hwy. 98 with a large stringer full of ducks and hide them behind a tree.  Castile and Soileau carried their pirogue up the bank to Castile's truck with another load of ducks.

Agents made contact with Castile and Soileau and were able to retrieve the hidden ducks.  Agents found the men with a total of 46 ducks consisting of 26 teal, 11 wood ducks, eight mallards and one pintail.  The men also didn’t possess a PFD in the pirogue.  The legal limit of ducks is six in aggregate per person per day making the men 34 ducks over the limit.

Taking or possessing over the limit of ducks and wanton waste each brings a $400 to $950 fine and up to 120 days in jail.  Failing to comply with PFD regulations brings up to a $50 fine and up to 15 days in jail.

Agents involved in this case are Sgt. Keith Dellahoussaye, Senior Agent Donald Murray, Senior Agent Derek Logan and Senior Agent Jason Stagg.

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

Shrimp Season To Close in Portions of State Inside and Outside Waters

Release Date: 01/23/2015

Shrimp Season To Close in Portions of State Inside and Outside Waters

(Jan. 23, 2015) Today, Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries Secretary Robert Barham announced a closure of the fall shrimp season in remaining state inside waters and in a portion of state outside waters effective Wednesday, January 28, 2015 at official sunset.

Specifically, those waters that will close to shrimping include:

  • Lake Pontchartrain, Chef Menteur and Rigolets Passes, Lake Borgne, Mississippi Sound, and the Mississippi River Gulf Outlet (MRGO)
  • The portion of state outside waters extending a distance of 3 nautical miles seaward of the inside/outside shrimp line from the northwest shore of Caillou Boca at -90 degrees 50 minutes 27 seconds west longitude westward to the Atchafalaya River Ship Channel at Eugene Island as delineated by the Channel red buoy line

The following state waters will remain open to shrimping until further notice:

  • The open waters of Breton and Chandeleur Sounds as described by the double-rig line in R.S. 56:495.1(A)2
  • All state outside waters east of Caillou Boca as well as all state outside waters west of Freshwater Bayou Canal
  • All fishery jurisdiction waters claimed by the state beyond the three nautical mile closure zone

For a map detailing today’s actions click here

Regulations state that the possession count on saltwater, white shrimp shall average no more than 100 (whole shrimp) count per pound, with the exception of October 15 through the third Monday in December, when there is no minimum count size.

The Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries Commission provided LDWF Secretary Robert Barham with authority to close both the fall inshore shrimp season and shrimping in the state’s territorial sea when biological and technical data indicate the need. Recent sampling conducted by the LDWF Fisheries biologists indicates that average white shrimp size in those waters to be closed is smaller than the minimum possession size limit. This action, which characteristically takes place at this time of year, is designed to protect small, white shrimp and provide opportunity for these populations to over-winter and grow to larger, more marketable sizes.

Louisiana continues to lead the country in shrimp landings. In 2013, approximately 5,300 licensed Louisiana commercial shrimpers landed 98.8 million pounds of shrimp (all species combined/heads-on weight) that had a dockside value of $178.3 million.

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 Martin Bourgeois (985) 594-4139 mbourgeois@wlf.la.gov. For press inquiries, contact Rene LeBreton at rlebreton@wlf.la.gov or (504) 286-8745

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