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LDWF News Release

Louisiana Could Receive $19 Million Annually for Wildlife, Fisheries Conservation

Release Date: 07/26/2018

The longtailed weasel, a species that would benefit from recent conservation legislation.

July 26, 2018 – Louisiana would receive $19 million annually to conserve more than 700 nongame fish and wildlife species and their habitats through a bill filed recently in Congress.
 
The bipartisan Recovering America’s Wildlife Act (S.B. 3223), introduced by Senators James Risch (R-Idaho) and Joe Manchin (D-W. Va.), proposes to provide state fish and wildlife agencies across the country a total of $1.3 billion annually to implement State Wildlife Action Plans. Louisiana’s share would be $19 million.
 
The source of funding would be royalties and revenues collected from energy and mineral development on federal lands and waters.
 
The new Senate bill is complementary to, and supports, the House bill (H.R. 4647) introduced in December 2017 by Jeff Fortenberry (R-Nebraska) and Debbie Dingell (D-Michigan). That bill has received strong support from both sides of the aisle, with more than 75 representatives having signed on to date.
 
“We’re encouraged that both the Senate and House see the value of the Recovering America’s Wildlife Act,’’ LDWF Secretary Jack Montoucet said. “This legislation would certainly have a major impact on our state’s Wildlife Action Plan. We would go from $600,000 to $19 million annually. That would allow us to fully implement our plan for nongame and threatened species and habitat in our state.”
 
It cost the American public hundreds of millions of dollars annually to restore threatened and endangered species. Implementing proactive conservation measures could eliminate or greatly those costs.
 
Proactive conservation is good for wildlife, good for taxpayers, good for business and good for our communities. The Recovering America’s Wildlife Act, supported by the Association of Fish & Wildlife Agencies, would provide the needed resources for proactive conservation nationwide.
 
The Alliance for America’s Fish & Wildlife supports those critical efforts. The Alliance’s purpose is to create a 21st-century funding model for critically needed conservation of the nation’s most precious natural resources – fish and wildlife.
 
This effort was built upon the strong partnership created by the “Blue Ribbon Panel on Sustaining America’s Diverse Fish & Wildlife Resources.” The panel consisted of members representing the outdoor recreation, retail and manufacturing sector, the energy and automotive industries, private landowners, educational institutions, conservation organizations, sportsmen’s groups and state and federal fish and wildlife agencies.
 
For more information, go to OurNatureUSA.com. For specific information on Louisiana’s State Wildlife Action Plan, go to http://www.wlf.louisiana.gov/wildlife/wildlife-action-plan or contact Carey Perry at cperry@wlf.la.gov .
 
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The Association of Fish & Wildlife Agencies represents North America’s fish and wildlife agencies to advance sound, science-based management and conservation of fish and wildlife and their habitats in the public interest. The Association represents its state agency members on Capitol Hill and before the Administration to advance favorable fish and wildlife conservation policy and funding and works to ensure that all entities work collaboratively on the most important issues. The Association also provides member agencies with coordination services on cross-cutting as well as species-based programs that range from birds, fish habitat and energy development to climate change, wildlife action plans, conservation education, leadership training and international relations. Working together, the Association’s member agencies are ensuring that North American fish and wildlife management has a clear and collective voice.
 
 

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August 2018 Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries Commission to Meet August 2 in New Orleans, LA

Release Date: 07/26/2018

The next regular Commission Meeting will be held at 9:30 AM on August 2, 2018, at the Lindy Boggs Conference Center Auditorium at 2045 Lakeshore Drive, New Orleans, LA 70122.

Please note that the location will not be at the usual location.

 

1.    Call to Order

2.    Pledge of Allegiance

3.    Roll Call

4.    Adoption of June 26, 2018 Special Commission Meeting and July 3, 2018 Commission Meeting Minutes

5.    Commission Special Announcements / Personal Privilege

6.    Enforcement Report July 2018 – Captain Edward Skena

7.    Receive Presentation on Cautioning Deer Hunters on Use of Deer Urine Lures in Relation to Potential Spread of CWD – Dr. Jim LaCour, Wildlife Veterinarian

8.    Receive and Consider a Declaration of Emergency Setting the 2018 Fall Inshore Shrimp Season – Peyton Cagle, Marine Fisheries Biologist

9.    Receive and Consider a Declaration of Emergency Setting the 2018-2019 Oyster Season on the Public Oyster Areas of Louisiana – Carolina Bourque, Marine Fisheries Biologist

10. Receive an Update on the 2018 Recreational Red Snapper Season – Jason Adriance, Marine Fisheries Biologist

11. Set December 2018 Commission Meeting Date

12. Receive Public Comments

13. Adjournment

 

A live audio/video stream of this meeting will be available via Gotowebinar.com.  To attend this meeting via webinar visit: https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/3301862397863804419

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

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 . To receive recreational or commercial fishing email and text alerts, signup at  http://www.wlf.la.gov/signup .

 

The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries is committed to accommodating all reasonable special requests regarding access to our meetings. Please direct all sign language interpreting services or other accommodation needs to rlebreton@wlf.la.gov at least 72 hours prior to the meeting date. 

Louisiana Oyster Task Force to Meet July 30

Release Date: 07/26/2018

Louisiana Oyster Task Force Meeting

John Tesvich, Chairman

Monday, July 30, 2018, 1 p.m.

2021 Lakeshore Dr., STE 210 

New Orleans, LA 70122

 

I.   Pledge of Allegiance 

II.  Roll call and introduction of guests 

III. Approval of May 29, 2018 Minutes and July 30, 2018 Agenda

IV. Treasury Report

A.     Oyster Tag Sales

B.     LOTF Financial Report

V.        Committee Reports

A.    Public and Private Oyster Grounds Committee  (Mitch Jurisich)

B.    Enforcement (Major Chad Hebert)

C.     Legislative (Jakov Jurisic)

D.   Research (Earl Melancon)

E.    Coastal Restoration (Dan Coulon)

F.     Marketing (LDWF)

G.    Health (Justin Gremillion)

H.   Professionalism (LDWF)

I.     Aquaculture (Steve Pollock)

J.     Joint Task Force Working Group (Mitch Jurisich)

VI.        New Business

A.     To Hear Recommendations for the 2018-2019 Oyster Season- LDWF

B.    To Hear an Update from the OTF Washington, D.C. Trip- OTF

C.    To Consider Funding and Participation in the 2019 LA Alive Event- OTF

D.   To Hear Discussion and Consider Funding to Order OTF Name Tags and Shirts- OTF

VII.       Public Comment

VIII.      Set Next Meeting

IX.        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/1672724815040409603

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. To receive email alerts, signup at http://www.wlf.la.gov/signup.For press inquiries please contact Rene LeBreton, 504-286-8745 or rlebreton@wlf.la.gov

The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries is committed to accommodating all reasonable special requests regarding access to our meetings. Please direct all sign language interpreting services or other accommodation needs to rlebreton@wlf.la.gov at least 72 hours prior to the meeting date.

Oyster Task Force Coastal Restoration Committee To Meet July 30

Release Date: 07/26/2018

Oyster Task Force Coastal Restoration Committee

Monday, July 30, 2018, 9:30 A.M.

2021 Lakeshore Drive, STE 210

New Orleans, LA 70122

AGENDA

 

I.    Call to Order

II.   Pledge of Allegiance

III.  To Discuss Planning for Management of State Oyster Leasing and Public Seed Grounds Affected by Coastal projects and Natural Hydrological Changes

IV.  Public Comment

V.   Set next meeting

VI.  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/6667723676672895745

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. To receive email alerts, signup at http://www.wlf.la.gov/signup. For press inquiries please contact Rene LeBreton, 504-286-8745 or rlebreton@wlf.la.gov

The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries is committed to accommodating all reasonable special requests regarding access to our meetings. Please direct all sign language interpreting services or other accommodation needs to rlebreton@wlf.la.gov at least 72 hours prior to the meeting date.

LDWF Celebrates 50th Anniversary of Brown Pelican Restoration at Queen Bess Island

Release Date: 07/25/2018

Young pelicans on Queen Bess Island.

July 20, 2018 - Imagine Louisiana without its state bird, the brown pelican. That was reality in the middle 1960s. Pelicans had ceased nesting in the state in 1961, and by 1963, they had disappeared.

The since-banned pesticide DDT was the primary culprit for the demise of the pelican.

 

However, in 1968, Louisiana began a restoration project of the species and Queen Bess Island, in Barataria Bay near Grand Isle in Jefferson Parish, was ground zero. Once a popular nesting spot with pelicans, Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries biologists thought it would be the perfect spot to reintroduce the pelican.

 

From 1968 through 1976, 767 brown pelican chicks were captured from Florida’s Atlantic Coast and relocated to coastal Louisiana, including to Queen Bess. In 1971, 11 nests were documented on this tiny island marking the first successful recolonization of brown pelicans in Louisiana. Biologists kept track of the growing numbers and documented a peak of about 4,000 nests on Queen Bess in 2008.

 

The majestic pelican has returned in a big way with sightings common along Louisiana’s coast. The species was removed from the Federal Endangered Species list in 2009.

 

“To think that we almost lost our state bird, the brown pelican, is inconceivable,’’ LDWF Secretary Jack Montoucet said. “As many drive along Louisiana’s coastal region and see the pelican flying above, it is easy to take for granted their great abundance. The job now is to make certain the species continues to flourish. We look forward to working with our partners to ensure that happens.’’

 

Improving the habitat on Queen Bess is a goal of Louisiana’s Coastal Protection and Restoration Authority (CPRA), LDWF and other partners. The island has experienced significant subsidence through the years and the nesting habitat is now approximately five acres and marginal at best.

 

“In Louisiana we share our living space with more species of the animal kingdom than just about anywhere else in America,” said CPRA Chairman Johnny Bradberry. “If we cannot save the habitat for those species, we cannot save it for ourselves. And as Queen Bess Island proves, every foothold of land is vitally important.”

 

Queen Bess was heavily impacted by the 2010 BP oil spill. Perhaps one of the most photographed islands during the oil spill, many birds were exposed to oil on this important rookery. It is fitting that the funds to restore the island and to increase nesting habitat for brown pelicans and the other birds that call Queen Bess home is proposed to come from the Natural Resources Damage Assessment (NRDA) funds allocated for birds in Louisiana.

 

To help reinvigorate the population and add to Queen Bess’ size, CPRA and LDWF are designing a restoration project that may begin as early as 2019. The tiny island is currently the third largest rookery in Louisiana for nesting pelicans with 15-20 percent of the state’s nesting activity occurring on Queen Bess. It is also nesting habitat for about 10 species of nesting birds and commonly has over 4,000 nests annually.

 

In many ways, the brown pelican is an indicator of the health of the Louisiana coast. The rookeries are on the front line of the coastal land loss crisis and experience all the devastating effects from oil spills to hurricanes as exposed barrier islands of Louisiana’s coastal marshes. As these rookeries subside and erode, pelicans are forced to move inland to find suitable alternatives. However, with meaningful restoration there is hope Louisiana’s state bird can continue to thrive and call the state’s coastal marshes home.

 

For video and photos from Queen Bess Island go https://ldwf.cantoflight.com/v/QueenBessIsland/landing.

 

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. To receive recreational or commercial fishing email and text alerts, signup at http://www.wlf.la.gov/signup.

LDWF to Deploy Floating Boom During Lake Bistineau Drawdown

Release Date: 07/20/2018

Location of boom deployment

The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries will begin its previously announced drawdown of Lake Bistineau on July 23.  The Department has begun to deploy a temporary floating boom to aid in giant salvinia control efforts. The boom is intended to control the drift of floating aquatic plants as the water level decreases, keeping it from spreading as easily, and allowing more effective herbicide application on the aggregated plants.

The floating boom will be deployed across both Bossier Slough and the Main Channel, including the wooded area in between, as depicted in the attached map. The boom is highly visible and will be marked with additional lights and signs. Passageways will be marked in both Bossier Slough and the Main Channel.

The drawdown is scheduled to begin July 23, 2018, and the lake should dewater at a rate of 4 to 6 inches per day. The maximum drawdown level is 8 feet below normal pool stage. Aquatic habitat conditions in the lake will be evaluated during the drawdown to determine the most appropriate time to end the drawdown and allow the lake to refill for recreational activities.

For additional information, contact Daniel Hill at (225) 765-2328 or dhill@wlf.la.gov.

 

 

Louisiana Red Snapper Landings Estimates through July 8

Release Date: 07/19/2018

The latest catch statistics for recreational red snapper recorded by LA Creel, the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries' near real-time landings data collection program, are 407,117 pounds, or 54 percent of Louisiana’s annual private recreational allocation of 743,000 pounds.

The current weekends-only season will continue to run until recreational landings approach or reach Louisiana’s allocation. 

This year, state and federal seasons are running concurrently because federal fisheries managers approved LDWF’s application for an Exempted Fishing Permit (EFP) to manage the private recreational snapper season in state and federal waters in 2018 and 2019. Under the EFP, participating anglers are allowed to fish red snapper in the state territorial seas and adjoining federal waters, from shore to 200 nautical miles. 

LDWF requests that recreational red snapper fishermen try out the tool developed to report catch electronically through the ROLP website or app. Though voluntary, reporting electronically will help us test this method of harvest data collection. Our goal is to continually improve our harvest data collection techniques to ensure our fishery resources are managed precisely and our fishermen have every possible opportunity to go out and catch fish. To get started on electronic reporting, go to wlf.louisiana.gov/snapper-efp-faqs and see question #14 (If I opt to participate in voluntary electronic reporting, how do I report my catch?).
    
For more information on the 2018 red snapper season and detailed landing estimates, visit: wlf.louisiana.gov/red-snapper .

LDWF to Hold Wildlife Rehabilitation Training Class in Minden on Sept. 29

Release Date: 07/19/2018

July 19, 2018 – The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) will hold a
Wildlife Rehabilitation Basic Skills Class on Sept. 29 from 9 a.m.-5 p.m. at the LDWF
Minden Field Office in Minden at 9961 Hwy 80 in the Auditorium. Registration will occur Aug. 1-Sept. 1 and the class will be limited to 100 participants.
 
The class is the only certification course recognized by LDWF and is for individuals who
would like to become wildlife rehabilitators. The basic skills class fulfills one of the
requirements for obtaining an LDWF wildlife rehabilitation license and is free.
 
The class will be taught by experienced wildlife rehabilitators, veterinarians and wildlife
professionals.
 
To register for the class, go to http://www.wlf.louisiana.gov/wildlife-rehab-training-signup.
 
For more information, contact LDWF permits coordinator Melissa Collins at 225-765-3968 or at mcollins@wlf.la.gov. Anyone interested in pursuing an LDWF wildlife rehabilitation license should contact Collins.
 

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Women Perfect Fishing Skills at Women’s Fishing Workshop Fishing Trip

Release Date: 07/19/2018

Women Perfect Fishing Skills at Women’s Fishing Workshop Fishing Trip

The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries hosted their annual Women’s Fishing Workshop fishing trip this past weekend at the Grand Isle Fisheries Research Lab, where 14 women perfected their angling skills under the supervision and assistance of experienced LDWF staff and Aquatic Volunteer Instructors. 
 
The primary component of the two-part workshop is a classroom-style instructional course held at Cabela’s in Gonzales. Angling techniques are taught to a group of 30 women, 18 and older, who may lack the opportunity or confidence to learn these skills. The ladies leave the workshop as more knowledgeable, independent anglers. Interested participants are then entered into a drawing for an opportunity to attend a fishing trip based out of the department’s Grand Isle Fisheries Research Lab.  
  
The ladies hit the ground running on Friday evening, learning proper technique to set up their rods and reels followed by casting practice from the dock. On Saturday, LDWF staff and volunteers led both inshore and offshore fishing trips, providing a hands-on opportunity for the participants to utilize the skills previously learned. After escaping early morning storms, the ladies were able to spend a full day on the water fishing for red snapper, speckled trout and redfish. When not on the boat, the ladies practiced fish cleaning, cast netting, trailering and toured the research lab.
 
The next workshop is scheduled for spring 2019. For more information on this program visit http://www.wlf.louisiana.gov/fishingworkshops.

Finfish Task Force to Meet Friday, July 20

Release Date: 07/19/2018

Finfish Task Force Agenda

Friday, July 20, 2018, 10:00AM

LDWF Headquarters in the Louisiana Room

2000 Quail Drive

Baton Rouge, LA 70898

 

AGENDA

I. Call to Order 

II. Roll Call and Introduction of Guests

III. Approval of the May 17, 2018 Meeting Minutes 

IV. Approval of the July 20, 2018 Meeting Agenda

V. New Business

A.     Discussion of Potential Changes to Black Drum Recreational and Commercial Harvest, Size, and Bag Limits- FTF

B.     Discussion of Mullet Season- FTF

C.     Discussion of Finfish Trawling- FTF

D.    To Hear an Update on the Status of Red Snapper -Rep. John Stefanski

E.     Discussion of Shad Seine Gear Regulations- Daniel Edgar

VI. Public Comment

VII. To Hear Future Agenda Item Proposals 

VIII. Set Next Meeting Date and Location

IX. 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/3041621189405405955

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. To receive email alerts, signup at http://www.wlf.la.gov/signup. For press inquiries please contact Rene LeBreton, 504-286-8745 or rlebreton@wlf.la.gov

The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries is committed to accommodating all reasonable special requests regarding access to our meetings. Please direct all sign language interpreting services or other accommodation needs to rlebreton@wlf.la.gov at least 72 hours prior to the meeting date.

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