LDWF News

LDWF News Release

L.O.W.A. Announces Fish of the Year Winners for 2012

Release Date: 08/09/2013

Elliot Sale of New Iberia, La. His 251-pound Yellowfin Tuna
Chip Metz of Morgan City, La. Metz  4.09-pound flounder

 

Aug. 9, 2013 -- The Louisiana Outdoor Writers Association (LOWA) has announced the winners of their annual Fish of the Year awards.

 

One of the winners for 2012 is Elliot Sale of New Iberia, La. His 251-pound Yellowfin Tuna earned him Fish of the Year award in the Rod & Reel Division/Saltwater Species. Sale’s tuna eclipsed the previous record by 9.81 pounds and was caught at West Delta Block 122 in October of 2012. Sale will accept his award at the LOWA annual conference awards banquet, Aug. 10, in Lafayette at the Holiday Inn.

 

The winner in the Fly Rod Division/ Saltwater Species for 2012 is Chip Metz of Morgan City, La. Metz landed a 4.09-pound flounder that is currently ranked in third place. His fish was caught in Four League Bay in August of 2012. Metz will also receive his award at the LOWA annual conference awards banquet.

 

Each year the LOWA Fish Records Committee selects anglers and fish from the submissions from the previous year to be nominated for the Fish of the Year. Nominees are then closely reviewed and a vote is taken. Awards are presented in both Rod & Reel and Fly Fishing divisions depending on entries.

 

For more information, email the fish records chairman at fishrecords@yahoo.com .

 

LOWA has been the curator for the state fish records since the 1940’s. To view the current records and download applications and rules, go to www.laoutdoorwriters.com.

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L.D.W.F. Accepting Applications for Waterfowl Group Hunts at White Lake W.C.A. for 2013-14 Hunting Season

Release Date: 08/08/2013

Aug. 8, 2013 -- The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) is now accepting applications for waterfowl group hunts for up to 12 hunters per group at White Lake Wetlands Conservation Area (WCA). 
 
The cost of the 2013-14 waterfowl season hunts will be $30,000 for each group and the application form is available on the LDWF website at http://www.wlf.louisiana.gov/hunting/lottery-hunts .  A completed application form and $2,500 deposit must be submitted to LDWF by the close of business on Friday, Aug. 30, 2013.
 
Interested groups must select one, two-day group hunt per application.  When selecting dates from the dates offered (example: Nov. 9-10), it is understood that arrival will be the afternoon before (example: Nov. 8).  The two consecutive days of hunting do not include the arrival day, which will be the day before from 3 to 5 p.m.
 
LDWF will select one application by random lottery drawing for each hunt offered.  Applicants must be at least 18 years old and must submit a separate application for each two-day group hunt they wish to reserve. Applicants can apply for as many as three separate, two-day hunts. If multiple applications are submitted, each will require a separate $2,500 deposit.
 
Applications must be accompanied by a bank draft, money order or other liquid instrument made payable to Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries in the amount of $2,500.  If the application is selected, the deposit is non-refundable. The applicant will be notified by mail or e-mail, and will be required to submit the final payment of $27,500 no later than Oct. 15, 2013.
 
The fee covers up to 12 hunters and includes the following:  transportation to and from the airport (Jennings or Lake Charles or Lafayette), all food and beverages, two-night stay at the White Lake Lodge, professional hunting and fishing guides, hunting and fishing licenses, steel shot shotgun shells for waterfowl hunts and lead shot for skeet range, the use of shotguns and fishing gear, bird and fish cleaning and packaging.
 
On the arrival day, hunters will watch a safety film and then be issued hunting and fishing licenses. If time allows, the group will shoot skeet in the late afternoon hours.  Day two starts with a morning waterfowl hunt from 6 to 9:30 a.m.  After the hunt, the group can fish or shoot clay targets on the skeet range or sporting clays course.  On day three, a morning waterfowl hunt is scheduled from 6 to 9:30 a.m., and checkout is no later than noon, after lunch.
 
Applications must be mailed to:
 
Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries
Attention: White Lake Group Hunt
P.O. Box 98000
Baton Rouge, LA 70898
 
(Optional physical address to be used for express deliveries):
 
Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries
Attention: White Lake Group Hunt
2000 Quail Drive, Room 422
Baton Rouge, LA   70808
 
For more information on White Lake WCA waterfowl group hunts, contact Wayne Sweeney at 337-536-9400, ext. 1, or wsweeney@wlf.la.gov .

 

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2013 White Lake W.C.A. Youth Waterfowl Hunts Announced

Release Date: 08/08/2013

Aug. 8, 2013  -- The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) is accepting applications for the 2013 youth waterfowl lottery hunts on White Lake Wetlands Conservation Area (WCA) in Vermilion Parish.

There is no charge for the LDWF-sponsored hunts on Nov. 2 and 3, provided as a quality experience for young waterfowl hunters. The participants in the hunts will be determined by a lottery drawing.

Applications for the lottery should be submitted to LDWF before close of business on Sept. 12, 2013. One applicant will be selected based on the Office of Wildlife’s seven field office geographic coverage areas, plus one participant selected from the state at large. To be eligible, applicants must be 15 years of age or younger on the date of the hunt they select.  Selected hunters must be accompanied in the blind by a parent or guardian, although the youth will be the only one permitted to possess a firearm.

Applications may be obtained by contacting any of LDWF's field offices or by visiting the LDWF website at http://www.wlf.louisiana.gov/hunting/lottery-hunts .  Completed applications may be delivered in person to Room 422 of the LDWF headquarter building at 2000 Quail Drive in Baton Rouge, or sent by mail to:

La. Department of Wildlife and Fisheries

Attention: White Lake Youth Waterfowl Hunt

P.O. Box 98000

Baton Rouge, LA 70898

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 on White Lake WCA youth waterfowl hunts, contact Wayne Sweeney at 337-536-9400 or wsweeney@wlf.la.gov .

 

 

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Tree Stand Safety Training

Release Date: 08/08/2013

Tree Stand Safety training instructors and students July 2013
Tree Stand training exercise July 2013

Aug. 8, 2013 – Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries’ Hunter Education Program staff and volunteer instructors recently completed training in the safe and proper use of tree stands and fall arrest systems.
 
The training was conducted by the Treestand Manufactures Association (TMA) and held at the Woodworth Education Center on July 26-27. Falls from tree stands injure hunters who use them for big game hunting and familiarity with equipment is the best preventive measure. TMA promotes the proper and safe use of tree stands and fall arrest systems for hunters in elevated positions.
 
Day one consisted of a Trainer’s course for hunter education program staff and day two provided a Basic Instructor’s course for volunteer instructors.  Classroom topics included the need for tree stand safety, TMA’s role in tree stand safety, training aids and equipment, and treestand safety curriculum and principals.  Attendees were taught to demonstrate the safe use of tree stands, proper use of full body harnesses, suspension relief and recovery techniques.
 
“Hunters who hunt from tree stands should consider a full body harness an integral part of their tree stand and use it each and every time they leave the ground to climb into a stand,” said John Sturgis, state coordinator for the LDWF’s Hunter Education Program.  “This training will allow our staff and volunteer instructors to do a better job of delivering the information that will educate Louisiana hunters on how to stay safe when hunting from an elevated position.”
 
Conducting the training for TMA were John Louk, TMA executive director, and L.J. Smith of Smith Investigations.    
 
For more information contact John Sturgis at 225-763-5448 or jsturgis@wlf.la.gov .

 

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Louisiana Saltwater Series Redfish Series to Wrap Regular Season in Empire

Release Date: 08/07/2013

 
(Aug. 7, 2013) – Our sixth and final qualifying event of 2013 is set for this weekend in Empire, and anglers couldn’t be more excited.  This will be the last opportunity for anglers across the South to qualify for the two-day Championship event in Venice this October. 
On Saturday, competitors will launch from The Delta Marina, located at 317 Rose Marie Drive in Empire.  Anglers will begin launching at 6 a.m., and scales open at 1 p.m.

The two-man team event has an entry fee of $200, with a 100 percent payout for top finishers.  Anglers can use artificial lures and weigh in their two best redfish, with a maximum length of 27 inches. 
Tournament sponsors include Shimano, PowerPro, Coors Light, Academy Sports and Outdoors, Daybrook Fisheries, Omega Protein, Plaquemines Parish, Mercury Marine, Conservation Force, Standard Mapping, Faux Pas Prints, Marsh & Bayou, Swamp Swatter, Frabill, Stick It Anchor Pins and YETI Coolers. 

Also, Standard Mapping will again offer a $500 contingency prize to the first place team if they currently have a Lowrance HD-S unit installed in their boat with at least one Standard Mapping E-Card.

For complete information, including rules, regulations and online registration go to www.lasaltwaterseries.com.  Online registration will close Thursday, August 8 at noon.   A $20 fee for all onsite tournament registrants will be incurred per team.  
A youth division is also available for no additional cost to introduce our young anglers to the sport of fishing and to teach the catch-and-release approach to conservation.  Youth division participants compete against one another in the youth division, and all youth anglers will be recognized.  Teams are allowed to have two youth anglers as part of their team as long as they are under the age of 16.

The Louisiana Saltwater Series is hosted in conjunction with the Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries Foundation.  The Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries Foundation 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 fish resources.

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.louisiana.gov on Facebook at www.facebook.com/ldwffb or follow us on Twitter @LDWF.

For more information, contact Ashley Wethey at awethey@wlf.la.gov (225) 765-2396.

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Aerial Spraying on Spring Bayou to Begin on Thursday

Release Date: 08/06/2013

(Aug. 6, 2013) – The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries will conduct an aerial herbicide application on Spring Bayou in Avoyelles Parish beginning Thursday, August 8 to control aquatic vegetation.

American lotus, which grows as a large floating pad, now covers the waterbody to the extent where navigation has become difficult. 

Approximately 300 acres of aquatic vegetation will be treated in the areas outlined in the following map.  Anglers and boaters are urged to stay clear of treatment areas this Thursday.

The herbicides to be used are approved by the Environmental Protection Agency for aquatic use.  The herbicides are not harmful to lake ecosystems, animal life or humans.  No fish consumption advisories will be issued for the treatment areas.

The Department of Wildlife and Fisheries is charged with managing and protecting many of 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 Ashley Wethey at awethey@wlf.la.gov or 225-765-2396.

 

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L.W.F.C. Repeals Hunting Closure in Portion of Orleans Parish, Effective Sept. 1, 2013

Release Date: 08/06/2013

August 6, 2013 -- The Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries Commission has approved the repeal of a ban on all hunting in a portion of Orleans Parish that had been in effect since 1991.  The prohibition was enacted by the LWFC to aid the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service) during establishment of the Bayou Sauvage National Wildlife Refuge, the largest urban wildlife refuge in the United States.
 
The move, recommended by the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries and approved during the Commission’s Aug. 1 meeting, will provide for youth waterfowl hunting opportunities  on the Bayou Sauvage National Wildlife Refuge, as well as continued feral hog control on the NWR by the Service to reduce wildlife habitat damage on the refuge.
 
The Commission’s action effects that portion of Orleans Parish east of the Jefferson-Orleans Parish line, northward to the southern shoreline of Lake Pontchartrain, northeast along the southern shoreline of Lake Pontchartrain to South Point, east-southeast along the southern shoreline of Lake Pontchartrain to Chef Pass, the southern shoreline of Chef Pass eastward to the western shoreline of the Intra-Coastal Waterway, the western shoreline of the Intra-Coastal Waterway southward to the Industrial Canal, the Industrial Canal south to the Mississippi River, and the Mississippi River to the Orleans-Jefferson Parish line.  The action will become  effective Sept. 1, 2013.  Public comment on the action can be submitted to Tommy Tuma, Biologist Director, Habitat Stewardship Branch of Wildlife Division, until November 7, 2013.
 
For more information, contact Tommy Tuma, LDWF Wildlife Division, at 225-765-2349 or ttuma@wlf.la.gov.

 

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Metairie Subjects Cited For Stealing Crabs

Release Date: 08/05/2013

Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) Enforcement Division agents cited two Metairie residents for alleged crabbing violations on Aug. 2 on Lake Pontchartrain.

LDWF agents set up surveillance from the shoreline of Lake Pontchartrain after receiving complaints about stolen crabs from crab traps in the area.  Agents observed David E. Shelhorse Jr, 37, and Jennifer Bourgeois, 31, running crab traps in the area with two different colored corks.

After stopping the subjects, the agents learned that the crab traps that Shelhorse Jr. and Bourgeois were taking crabs from belonged to another commercial fisherman.

Agents cited Shelhorse Jr. and Bourgeois for unlawfully removing contents of a crab trap, which carries a $400 to $950 fine and up to 120 days in jail if found guilty.

Agents also seized 63.5 pounds of blue crabs.

The agents participating in the case are Sgt. Jason Russo, Sgt. Kris Bourgeois and Sgt. Adam Young.

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

Morgan City Man Arrested For Vandalizing LDWF Equipment

Release Date: 08/02/2013

A joint investigation involving the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) Enforcement Division and the St. Mary Parish Sheriff’s Office has resulted in an arrest of a Morgan City man this morning, Aug. 2, for his alleged role in vandalizing LDWF equipment on the Atchafalaya Delta Wildlife Management Area (WMA).
Aaron LeCompte, 18, turned himself into St. Mary Parish Office deputies and admitted to vandalizing two pieces of LDWF equipment and was subsequently booked into the St. Mary Parish Criminal Facility.
The investigation began when an LDWF bulldozer and utility vehicle (UTV) were first noticed missing on July 24 on the Big Island portion of the Atchafalaya Delta WMA.  LDWF staff found the missing equipment later that evening on Big Island.  The bulldozer was buried in mud and water up to the floorboard.  The UTV was found stuck in a ditch.
The total damage done to the equipment and the costs associated with retrieving both pieces of equipment are unknown at this time.
LeCompte is charged with two counts of unlawful use of a vehicle and simple criminal damage to property.  Unlawful use of a vehicle brings up to a $5,000 fine and 10 years in jail for each offense.  Simple criminal damage to property carries up to a $1,000 fine and two years in jail if the damage to the property is between $500 and $50,000.
For more information, contact Adam Einck at 225-765-2465 or aeinck@wlf.la.gov.

Commission Sets Tentative 2013-2014 Migratory Waterfowl Season Dates

Release Date: 08/01/2013

Aug. 1, 2013 -- The Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries Commission (LWFC) voted today to tentatively adopt proposed season dates, bag limits and shooting hours for the 2013-14 migratory waterfowl season.  The dates will be ratified by a declaration of emergency from the Commission, after approval from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.

The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) recommended a 60-day season for ducks, coots and mergansers in the three zones in place for the 2013-14 hunting season. Shooting hours begin one-half hour before sunrise and extend until sunset.

In the West Zone, the first segment will open on Nov. 16 and close on Dec. 15.  The second segment will open on Dec. 21 and run through Jan. 19.  In the East Zone, the first segment will run from Nov. 23 to Dec. 8.  The second segment will start Dec. 14 and end Jan. 26. In the Coastal Zone, the first segment will open on Nov. 9 and close on Dec. 1, and the second segment will open on Dec. 14 and run through Jan. 19.
 
Youth waterfowl hunts will be held Nov. 9 and [Jan. 25 corrected] in the West Zone, Nov. 16 and Feb. 1 in the East Zone, and Nov. 2-3 in the Coastal Zone.

The daily bag limit on ducks is six and may include no more than four mallards (no more than two of which may be females), two pintails, two canvasback, one mottled duck, one black duck, three wood ducks, three scaup and two redheads.

The daily bag limit on coots is 15.  The daily bag limit for mergansers is five, of which only two may be hooded mergansers.  The merganser limits are in addition to the daily bag limit for ducks.

The possession limit on ducks, coots and mergansers is three times the daily bag limit.

Light geese and white-fronted geese will have a 74-day season.  The first segment in the West Zone will open on Nov. 16 and close on Dec. 15.  The second segment in the West Zone will run from Dec. 21 to Feb. 2.  The first segment in the East Zone will open on Nov. 9 and run until Dec.  8.  The East Zone second segment will run from Dec. 14 to Jan. 26.  In the Coastal Zone, the season on light and white-fronted geese will be Nov. 9 to Dec.1 and Dec. 14 to Feb. 2. The daily bag limit on light geese is 20, with no possession limit.  The daily limit on white-fronted geese is two, with a possession limit of six, however when the Canada goose season is open, the limit on white-fronted and Canada geese will be three per day of which no more than two can be white-fronted.

The Canada goose season in the West Zone will open on Nov. 16 and close on Dec. 15.  The second segment in the West Zone will run from Dec. 21 to Jan. 31.  The first segment in the East Zone will open on Nov. 9 and run until Dec.  8.  The East Zone second segment will run from Dec. 14 to Jan. 26.  In the Coastal Zone, the first segment will be Nov. 9 to Dec.1 and Dec. 14 to Jan. 31.

There will not be a Canada goose season in a small area of southwest Louisiana. That closure zone includes the following area: Beginning at the Texas state line, proceeding east along Hwy 82 to the Calcasieu Ship Channel, then north along the Calcasieu Ship Channel to its junction with the Intracoastal Canal, then east along the Intracoastal Canal to its juncture with LA Hwy 82, then south along LA Hwy 82 to its juncture with Parish road 3147 to Freshwater  Bayou Canal, then south to the Gulf of Mexico, then west along the shoreline of the Gulf of Mexico to the Texas state line, then north to the point of beginning at LA Hwy 82.  Open waters of Lake Arthur and the Mermentau River, from the Hwy 14 bridge southward, will also be closed to Canada goose hunting.

The daily limit for Canada geese is three dark geese of which no more than two can be white-fronted geese.  The possession limit is nine for Canada geese.

The Statewide Conservation Order for light geese will open the first segment in the West Zone on Dec. 16 and run to Dec. 20, and the second segment will run from Feb. 3 to March 2.  The first segment in the East Zone will run from Dec. 9 to Dec. 13, and the second segment will run from Jan. 27 to March 2.  The first segment in the Coastal Zone will run from Dec. 2 to 13, and the second segment from Feb. 3 to March 2.  During this time, only snow, blue and Ross geese may be taken and daily bag and possession limits are eliminated.  The use of electronic calls and unplugged shotguns is allowed.  Shooting hours during the Conservation Order begin one-half hour before sunrise and extend until one-half hour after sunset.

Rails and gallinules may be taken from Nov. 9 to Jan. 1.  For King and Clapper rails, the daily limit is 15 in the aggregate with a possession limit of 45.  Sora and Virginia rails have a daily limit of 25 in the aggregate and a possession limit of 75.  Gallinules have a daily bag limit of 15 with a possession limit of 45.

Snipe season will open in the West Zone with the first segment from Nov. 9 to Dec. 15, and the second segment from Dec. 21 to Feb. 28. In the East Zone, the first segment will run from Nov. 9 to Dec. 8, with a second segment running Dec. 14 to Feb. 28.  The coastal zone’s first segment is from Nov. 2 to Dec. 1 and second segment is from Dec. 14 to Feb. 28.  The daily bag limit is 8 and the possession limit is 24.

An extended falconry season for ducks, rails and gallinules will take place from Nov. 4 to Feb. 2.

For more information, contact Larry Reynolds at 225-765-0456 or lreynolds@wlf.louisiana.gov.

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