Release Date: 07/07/2006

The Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries Commission announced that it would keep two waterfowl hunting zones in the state through the 2010 hunting season.  The decision came at the commission's regular meeting on July 6.

Robert Helm, the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries waterfowl study leader informed the commission that the majority of hunters surveyed preferred that the state remain split into east and west zones.  The survey provided hunters with three options: to have two zones with split seasons, to have three zones with no splits or to have a statewide season with three splits.

The survey, conducted by Louisiana State University, was sent to more than 6,000 Louisiana duck hunters; more than half responded.  The current season structure was favored at 53 percent, three zones interested only 6 percent of responders and 41 percent preferred the statewide season.

An Internet poll collected hunter opinions through the LDWF Web site during May and June. Of the nearly 700 responses, the current season framework was preferred by 43 percent of those responding, with 6 percent voting for the three-zone option and 51 percent voting for the statewide season.

The commission's decision will now be forwarded to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, which will provide choices for season dates based on the structure.  The commission will decide the dates at their next regular meeting on Aug. 3.

For more information, contact Robert Helm at 225/765-2358 (rhelm@wlf.louisiana.gov).