Release Date: 06/22/2010

Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries Law Enforcement Division (LDWF/LED) agents will take part in this weekend’s Operation Dry Water, a nationally coordinated effort focusing on increased boating safety.

From June 25 through 27, agents will be out in force patrolling state waterways for boat operators whose blood alcohol content exceeds the state limit of .08 percent. Operation Dry Water includes increased patrols as well as boater education.

"We want people to be safe and have fun while boating recreationally," commented Lt. Col. Jeff Mayne, LDWF’s state Boating Law Administrator.  "But alcohol use has become the leading contributing factor in fatal recreational boating accidents.  We recommend that boaters avoid drinking alcoholic beverages at all times, and we will have zero tolerance for anyone found operating a boat under the influence of alcohol or drugs on our waters."

Alcohol can impair a boater’s judgment, balance, vision and reaction time.  It can increase fatigue and susceptibility to the effects of cold-water immersion.  Sun, wind, noise, vibration and motion intensify the side effects of alcohol, drugs and some prescription medications.  

Louisiana had 32 fatalities from boating crash incidents in 2009.  Alcohol was again the leading primary cause of those boating fatal incidents leading to 24 percent of the fatalities.  Out of the 32 fatalities from boating crash incidents, 17 were drowning and 15 of those were not wearing a life jacket.  Nationwide, statistics from 2008 reveal that 17 percent of all boat incident fatalities were a direct result of alcohol or drug us.

Impaired boaters caught this weekend can expect penalties to be severe.  In Louisiana, a DWI on the water is the same penalties and fines as they are on the road and include jail time, fines and loss of driving and boating operator privileges.   

“There will be arrests this weekend and some boaters will face the consequences of operating a boat while impaired," added Lt. Col. Mayne.  "But we'd much rather arrest someone than to have to tell their friends and family they're never coming back."

Operation Dry Water is a joint program involving the LDWF/LED, the National Association of State Boating Law Administrators (NASBLA) and the U.S. Coast Guard.  More information is available at

 For more information contact Lt. Rachel Zechenelly at 225-765-2984 or


FUN Camp

 Families Understanding Nature Camp

FUN means Families Understanding Nature and offers parents and their children an opportunity to spend a weekend in the outdoors, re-establishing bonds and honing outdoor skills.

They participate in a variety of activities (shooting, fishing, canoeing, camping, and ecology) to develop a greater appreciation for the outdoors, become more comfortable in an outdoor environment and have fun. Children must be between 10 and 13 years old to attend. There are no facilities for children younger than 10 years old.

NOTE: Parents and boys will be in one barracks wing while parents and girls will be in another wing.

Families Understanding Nature Camp 2014 Schedule

Father-Child Families Understanding Nature Camp: March 6-8, 2015

Mother-Child Families Understanding Nature Camp: October 2-4, 2015


Rifle Shooting
Firearm safety and marksmanship will be reviewed. Actual shooting of .22 caliber rifles will be conducted under an instructor's supervision. All firearms, ammunition, targets and safety equipment will be provided.

Shotgun Shooting
Firearm safety and marksmanship will be reviewed. Actual shooting of 20 gauge shotguns will be conducted under an instructor's supervision. All firearms, ammunition, targets and safety equipment will be provided.

Learn basic archery fundamentals. Practice what you have learned by shooting arrows with a bow under an instructor's supervision. All bows, arrows, targets and safety equipment provided.

Learn the basics of canoe handling and safety. Then take a canoe trip, and visit a real beaver dam, around beautiful Indian Creek Reservoir with one of our instructors. Canoes, paddles and Personal Flotation Devices furnished.

The basics of fishing - rods and reels, baits, tackle and accessories will be covered. The instructor will provide tips on casting and where to find fish. There will be plenty of time to wet a hook. All the fishing gear will be provided, or feel free to bring your own.

Compass Reading
Learn how to use a compass and try your hand on a simple compass course. Parents and children work together to learn basic orienteering skills.

Nature Study Hike
Our instructor will lead you on a hike. You'll identify some plants and animals, collect and identify some aquatic organisms and learn how to improve your observation skills. Tips and ideas will be given on how to have a safe and enjoyable hike and some things to do on your hike.

Saturday night all participants will camp out and cook supper and breakfast. Instructors will guide you in setting up a camp, building a fire, cooking and clean up. Tents and cooking gear will be provided.

For more information on Father/Child Families Understanding Nature Camp, contact Chad Moore @ 318-371-3043 or email  and Karen Crabtree @ 318-766-8144 or email for Mother/Child Families Understanding Nature Camp or Families Understanding Nature Camp.

Waddill Outdoor Education Center


4142 North Flannery
Baton Rouge, LA 70814


Open Tuesday to Saturday
7:30 am to 5pm

Waddill Wildlife Refuge and Outdoor Education Center is 237 acres of hardwood bottomland that borders the Comite River. It provides teachers of all grade levels an opportunity for their students to explore and experience the natural world. The on site Educator can conduct educational programs in a variety of wildlife, environmental and outdoor skills topics. Some of the most requested programs include fishing clinics, interpretive hikes, wetland related programs, wilderness survival and plant identification. We can prepare and present other programs to fulfill your needs. Feature and facilities available at Waddill include a 130-seat classroom, two fishing ponds with fishing piers, picnic pavilion, trails, archery range, restrooms, sand bar on the river, and plenty of fauna and flora. Most of them are handicap accessible. If you would like to plan and schedule a field trip to Waddill, call Bradley Jackson at 225-274-8192 or E-mail at

WaddillOutdoor Education Center is conveniently located in Baton Rouge on North Flannery Road. It is the perfect place to get away from it all either with family or by yourself. We offer two ponds for fishing (catch & release only), nature trails, a swamp, the Comite River, picnic facilities, and plenty of open spaces. With 280 acres, Waddill is a little piece of wilderness in your own back yard.

Anyone who is an educator, formal or informal, will appreciate the educational opportunities at Waddill. A full time Wildlife Educator is on site to present nature programs or to assist teachers, scoutmasters, and other types of educators in designing their own programs. The center can accommodate both outdoor and indoor activities. Our large, temperature controlled education building provides room for pre and post activities and is equipped with a TV and VCR.

If you wish to use our wildlife educator to present a program to your group or would like to use the education building, we ask that you contact us for reservations. No reservations are required to use our outdoor facilities, however, be aware that you may be sharing the area with other groups.

We look forward to working with you in bringing your students a greater appreciation of the environment and their role in it. If you have any questions or would like to make a reservation please contact:

Karla Allen
Waddill Outdoor Education Center
4142 North Flannery Road
Baton Rouge, LA 70814
Phone: 225-274-8192


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