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THURSDAY WILDLIFE & FISHERIES COMMISSION MEETING: 9:30 a.m., Louisiana Room, state Wildlife & Fisheries headquarters, Quail Drive, Baton Rouge. FRIDAY FRIDAY NIGHT COOKIE JAR BASS TOURNAMENT: 7 p.m.-midnight, La. Express Landing, False River (south end), Jarreau. Fee $30/boat plus launch fee (maximum 2 anglers). Weekly Friday night event through Sept. 11. Call Guy Perkins (225) 293-3402. FRIDAY-SUNDAY ANNUAL GRAND… Continue reading →

Public lands available for dove opener

Louisiana dove hunters will have four sites to open Saturday’s season. The Department of Wildlife and Fisheries has leased acreage in three parishes, one near Wilmer in Tangipahoa Parish, two in Jeff Davis Parish and another near DeRidder. Hunting hours will be noon to sunset. Another south Louisiana public lands hunt for the season… Continue reading →

State recreational red snapper season closure set next week

The state’s fishery managers announced Wednesday that Louisiana’s private recreational red snapper season will close at 12:01 a.m. Tuesday, Sept. 8. The staff determined the closure based on the anticipated recreational catch through the Labor Day weekend would reach Louisiana’s “... historic and projected share of the total Gulf of Mexico private angler red snapper harvest.”… Continue reading →

Reporting banded birds gives waterfowl biologists key data

File photo J. Brandt Lieux holds a mallard with federal bird bands on both legs he took on a hunt five seasons ago near Deer Park, an oxbow lake off the Mississippi River. This rare treat for a hunter means the greenhead was captured twice and entered into the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service's data base. Federal waterfowl managers use reports from hunters taking birds with bands to determine flight patterns among other band studies.

Reporting bird bands is an important tool to help state and federal biologists study populations and migrations of waterfowl and other migratory birds. Migratory waterfowl and some migratory birds are banded by federal and state teams to determine flight patterns and assist in other migratory date collection and reporting. State teams band in excess of 2,000 wood… Continue reading →

Bumper mast crop could mean bountiful year for squirrel hunters

File photoContinuing a sport passed down by two generations of Bergerons, third- and fourth-generation rabbit hunters in the family, from left, Colby Bergeron, Glyn Bergeron, Taylor Bergeron and Troy Bergeron show rabbits taken during a recent hunting season in Iberville Parish swamps. South Louisiana rabbit hunters organized five years ago to campaign for more days in the field, and the state's Wildlife Division sought and the Wildlife and Fisheries Commission approved small-game emphasis areas on more than a dozen state wildlife management areas to accommodate more rabbit and squirrel hunters.

Deer hunters went nuts last season only because there were so many nuts. Wildlife biologists call it “mast,” the food oaks, beech, hickory and other nut-producing trees provide for most of Louisiana’s wild animals. There was a bumper crop last fall, and deer hunters who sweated through the late summer planting food plots for whitetails found… Continue reading →

Like Black Friday for outdoors retailers, 2nd Amendment Weekend serves to 'jump-start' hunting season

There’s something bigger around Louisiana than Saturday’s opening of the dove season, maybe even bigger, for sportsman, than the opening weekend of the college football season. It’s the state’s seventh year of the Second Amendment Weekend Sales Tax Holiday, and the benefits can last for years. The special tax-free days run Friday through Sunday, and outdoors… Continue reading →

2015-2016 Louisiana deer hunting dates

GUN SEASONS The state is divided into 10 areas for deer hunting AREA 1: Nov. 14-20 & Jan. 25-31 (primitive firearms, still hunt only, either sex); Nov. 21-Dec. 11 & Jan. 4-24 (modern firearms, still hunt only, either sex); Dec. 12-Jan. 3 (modern firearms, with/without dogs, either sex). AREA 2: Oct. 24-30 & Jan. 18-24 (primitive firearms, still hunt… Continue reading →

Things to know about deer

WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW LIMITS: The daily limit is 1 antlered and 1 antlerless deer (except during bucks-only periods) on all private lands, some National Forest lands and designated federal lands/refuges. The season limit is 6, of which no more can be 3 antlered deer or 4 antlerless deer. Antlerless deer taken in the Deer Management Assistance Program… Continue reading →

Small game season dates

3/29/12. Photo by John Oubre. Two tree squirrels seem to play hide and seek as they chase each other on the campus of Southern University near lake kernan.

RABBIT Statewide: Oct. 3-Feb. 29. Daily limit is 8. Possession limit 24. SQUIRREL Statewide: Oct. 3-Feb. 29 & May 7-29, 2016. Daily limit is 8. Possession limit 24 during the fall/winter season. Daily limit is 3, possession limit 9 during spring 2016 season. The May season is open on all private lands statewide, but closed in the Kisatchie National… Continue reading →

Migratory bird and waterfowl season dates

DOVES South Zone: Sept. 5-13, Oct. 10-Dec. 1, Dec. 19-Jan. 15. North Zone: Sept. 5-27, Oct. 10-Nov. 8, Dec. 10-Jan. 15. Taking mourning, white-winged, Eurasian collared and ringed-turtle doves allowed. Daily limit is 15. Possession limit 45. There is no bag limit on Eurasian collared-doves nor ringed turtle-doves when hunters leave a fully feathered wing and head on the… Continue reading →

‘Teal are here:’ Waterfowl season outlook promising

Image provided by the U.S. Fish & Wildlife ServiceThis is the artwork for the 2015-2016 Federal Waterfowl Stamp. The winning artist for these ruddy ducks is Jennifer MIller from Olean, N.Y. for her Congress approved a hike in the duck stamp for the coming waterfowl season, pushing the cost from $15 to $25. Waterfowl hunters 17 and older need to have this stamp, and signed by the hunter, while hunting all migratory waterfowl.

It’s early September, and, like all waterfowl hunters, Larry Reynolds has that can’t-wait look in his eyes. Sept. 12 seemed like ages away when the last decoys were picked from the pond, the shotgun cleaned and the waders stored in January, and Sept. 12 is almost here. It’s opening day of the 16-day special September teal season.… Continue reading →

Deer hunting days up, but take down

File photoTommy Rice shows off the nontypical whitetail deer he took near Star Hill in West Feliciana Parish. The 28-point buck scored 228 7/8 points in the Boone and Crockett Program, and ranks third on the state's category for deer taken with a modern firearm.

There’s no question that Louisiana offers its deer hunters liberal hunting days. It’s possible, with archery, primitive and modern firearms seasons, to take to the field in search of whitetails, and the valuable venison they provide, from Sept. 19 through Feb. 15. That’s darned near five full months. So, for the state’s hundreds of thousands of… Continue reading →

Macaluso: There’s no place like Sportsman’s Paradise

File photoTommy Rice shows off the nontypical whitetail deer he took near Star Hill in West Feliciana Parish. The 28-point buck scored 228 7/8 points in the Boone and Crockett Program, and ranks third on the state's category for deer taken with a modern firearm.

Welcome to the hunting season. Excited? Sure hope so, because with Saturday’s first early morning shot at doves, there’s a chance to hunt in Louisiana’s fields, forests, swamps and marshes for most of the days from then until near the end of May. Add in year-round fishing, and we’re set for another for… Continue reading →

Don’t think camo, think camouflage

Advocate staff photo by BILL FEIG -- Chaz Messina scales a tree with a tree stand for hunting.

Want to start a discussion that will last throughout the hunting season? Start talking about camo. Today, with more and more camouflage outerwear made by more and more companies, the choices are so much more than two generations ago when olive drab was about the only color offered and army surplus… Continue reading →

Bayou State’s fishing second to none

Advocate staff photo by JOE MACALUSO -- Jeff Bruhl with bass taken in August from the MRGO.

Thanksgiving is a time for reflection on all the good there is in Louisiana. For fishermen, there’s no better time to consider, if only for a moment, what the waters of the Sportsman’s Paradise offer. It’s a time to think about our brother and sister anglers up North, the guys and gals who are getting ready… Continue reading →

Macaluso: Bass action up; good forecast for holiday weekend

The short run of cool mornings was welcomed, and it spurred bass in the Atchafalaya and Verret basins to move from their summertime holes and visit the shallows at least over last weekend. Or was it the full moon that triggered morning runs at spinnerbaits, buzzbaits, jigs-n-pigs and crawfish imitations? Reports from the coast were about the same,… Continue reading →

Outdoors calendar

MONDAY FIN-ADDICT FLY FISHERS MEETING: 6:30 p.m., Spahr’s Seafood Restaurant, 1400 W. Tunnel Blvd., Houma. Call Stephen Robert (985) 850-0082. Website: finaddictflyfishers.blogspot.com. TUESDAY ACADIANA FLY RODDERS PROGRAM: 6:30 p.m., Grace Presbyterian Church Hall, 415 Roselawn, Lafayette. Call Richard Latiolais (337) 354-8957. WEDNESDAY PONTCHARTRAIN BASIN FLY FISHERS MEETING: 6:30 p.m., first Wednesday monthly, Beach House Grill, 124… Continue reading →

Macaluso: Memories of Katrina linger

If you don’t remember where you were and what you were doing 10 years ago today, then you weren’t here, not in southeast Louisiana. For me, at dawn, it was trying to remove a very large red oak from the corner of our Broadmoor home, then trying to find someone to make repairs,… Continue reading →

High rivers change fishing landscape

Advocate staff photo by GARY KROUSESumnmer's top photoKirk Rhinehart was fishing nearshore platforms during the recreational red snapper season in early June and was catching red snapper and mangrove snapper and decided to have Advocate videographer Gary Krouse snap a photo on his cellphone to remember the catch. Krouse waited a few seconds, just enough time for a waterspout that was about a mile away to pass from starboard to port about a quarter-mile off the bow and make Rhinehart's photograph even more memorable.

The unusually long run of snow melt along with spring and summer rains pushing the Mississippi and Atchafalaya rivers to abnormally high stages well into August left its mark on two of the country’s hottest freshwater fishing spots. Most in-state anglers don’t put the Atchafalaya Spillway and Venice’s freshwater runs on the national bass-fishing map, but consider Mike Iaconelli… Continue reading →

Bass fishing terrific in lower Terrebonne, but tickets being issued

Photo provided by JIM BREAUXFresh from a second-place finish in July's Bassmaster High School National Championship, Cade Fortenberry from Prairieville shows off two among his five-bass limit he caught during Saturday's monthly Junior Southwest Bassmasters of Denham Springs tournament held from Adam's Landing. Fortenberry won the 15-18 year-old age group with a 10.33-pound catch to edge Bassmaster High School champion Alex Henitze from Denham Springs. Heintze's five bass weighed 8.78 pounds. Fortenberry teamed with Braden Blanchard, and Justin Watts was Heintze's fishing partner in the high school tournament held on Kentucky Lake in late July. The majority of the 35 youngsters competing in last weekend's youth competion weighed five-bass limits.

While the bass-catching action is terrific in the marshes south of Gibson, launching from Bob’s Bayou Black Marina, word is be careful where you attempt to catch those hungry largemouths. Fishermen called in earlier this week saying misdemeanor criminal trespass tickets were written for as many as eight boats in ponds off popular fishing locations as the Bluebird Canal,… Continue reading →

Outdoors calendar

THURSDAY NEW ORLEANS FLY FISHERS MEETING: 7 p.m., Whitney Bank, 1441 Metairie Rd., New Orleans. Call Sean Gilthorpe (504) 259-2329. FRIDAY FRIDAY NIGHT COOKIE JAR BASS TOURNAMENT: 7 p.m.-midnight, La. Express Landing, False River, Jarreau. Fee $30/boat plus launch. Call Guy Perkins (225) 293-3402. saturday INAUGURAL ASCENSION AREA ANGLERS BASS OPEN: Safe daylight, Doiron’s Landing, either… Continue reading →

Macaluso fishing report: Basin down, problems still there

With the major rivers finally getting to fishable levels, a couple of warnings to hand out about the Atchafalaya Spillway, notably that a sandbar that’s been building in Grand Lake for three years is high enough that it stretches across the lake, and that the months of high water has left this great Basin filled with hydrilla and other… Continue reading →

Fishing results

Junior Southwest Bassmasters BELLE RIVER — Saturday’s & Sunday’s age-group results from the Junior Southwest Bassmasters-Denham Springs tournaments held from Adam’s Landing (Belle River & Atchafalaya Spillway sides) with anglers, their hometowns (when available), number of bass weighed in parentheses (five-bass limit), total stringer weight in pounds and big-bass anglers. Saturday’s tournament was the regular monthly… Continue reading →

Macaluso: Quail back on banquet schedule

South Louisiana sportsmen flock to one or more fundraising fetes throughout any year to support their favorite outdoors passion. Waterfowl hunters have Ducks Unlimited and Delta Waterfowl; fishermen have the Coastal Conservation Association and the Bass Anglers Sportsman Society; big-game hunters the Quality Deer Management Association, Safari Club International, and there are two… Continue reading →

Outdoors calendar

MONDAY RED STICK FLY FISHERS FLY-TYING SESSION: 7 p.m., Bass Pro Shops, Denham Springs. Call Pete Bongiovanni (225) 313-3813 . Website: www.rsff.org. WEDNESDAY LOUISIANA OYSTER TASK FORCE MEETING: 1 p.m., Suite 210, UNO Advanced Technology Center, 2021 Lakeshore Drive, New Orleans. THURSDAY NEW ORLEANS FLY FISHERS MEETING: 7 p.m., Whitney Bank, 1441 Metairie Rd., New Orleans. Call Sean Gilthorpe… Continue reading →

Ryan Isaacks to take on pro in Arkansas for chance to win Ranger boat

Photo furnished by SAM BARBERAAnd in her white bootsMatilyn Rose Moreau celebrated the final days before starting kindergarten by catching fish with her father in the Empire-South Pass Tarpon Rodeo earlier this month. The 5-year-old from Port Sulphur entered her redfish in the rodeo's Youth Division. Papa Moreau said his daughter's Christmas wish list last December "was not Barbie stuff, but fishing and hunting gear." It looks like her new fishing tackle paid off with her rodeo catch.

Ryan Isaacks joined a fraternal organization this week. It’s the thousands of members Lucky Anglers of America, and from the way the diehard Prairieville bass fisherman sounded on the telephone Wednesday afternoon, he’s beyond overjoyed at the prospect awaiting him during the next four days. Isaacks was selected to be the fisherman to challenge a touring pro angler in… Continue reading →

Outdoors calendar

THURSDAY SUGAR CHAPTER/CCA BANQUET: 5:30 p.m., Cade Community Center, 1688 Smede Hwy., St. Martinville. Tickets $60, $30 spouses, $25 youths, $500 & $1,000 tables. Call CCA (225) 952-9200. FRIDAY PIERRE PART/BELLE RIVER CHAPTER/DUCKS UNLIMITED BANQUET: 6 p.m., St. Joseph the Worker Hall, 3304 La. Highway 70-S, Pierre Part. Call Joey Chamberlain (985) 703-0204 or Garret St. Germain (985)… Continue reading →

Fishing results

Bassmaster Elite NORTH EAST, Md. — Sunday’s final top 12 in the four-day Bassmaster Elite Series held on Chesapeake Bay with anglers, their hometowns, number of bass weighed in parentheses (5-bass daily limit), catch weight in pounds and prize winnings. Also listed are other Louisiana anglers, bonus awards winners, and Top 10 & Louisiana anglers in overall standings… Continue reading →

Macaluso fishing report: It’s time to hit the Basin ... finally

It’s the news Capital City and Acadiana area fishermen have been awaiting for darned near six months — the Atchafalaya River is falling and this vast basin is ready to produce bass, sac-a-lait, bluegill and chinquapin. Although water levels are falling slowly, Sunday’s level at Morgan City is expected to be 4.2 feet, which is near the point where… Continue reading →

Outdoors calendar

TUESDAY LAFAYETTE KAYAK FISHING CLUB MEETING: 6 p.m., Pack and Paddle, 601 E. Pinhook, Lafayette. Call (337) 232-5854. Website: www.lafayettekayakfishing.com. THURSDAY SUGAR CHAPTER/CCA BANQUET: 5:30 p.m., Cade Community Center, 1688 Smede Hwy., St. Martinville. Tickets $60, $30 spouses, $25 youths, $500 & $1,000 tables. Call CCA (225) 952-9200.… Continue reading →

Change in wind direction aids speckled trout reports

Advocate staff photo by BILL FEIG -- Blake Rymer, left holds a 4 pound speckled trout as Tommy Vidrine, right, holds a 4 pound, 4 ounce speckled trout during the second day of the 2015 International Grand Isle Tarpon Rodeo. The pair are part of the "Beatin Bangin" team.

All it took was two days of east and southeast winds to turn around speckled trout action along the Central Coast. Reports coming late Friday and Saturday showed limits and near limits of trout coming from the beaches and reef north of Grand Isle and along the beaches to the east and west of that island. Live shrimp… Continue reading →

Baton Rouge Antique Decoy Show focuses on rich tradition of state’s decoy artists

Photos provided by GARY LIPHAMAntique duck decoys, like these three carved circa 1925 and used by Adam Ansardi, will be on display during Saturday's Baton Rouge Antique Decoy Show at BREC's Bluebonnet Swamp Nature Center.

The art and artistry of Louisiana’s outdoors is front and center Saturday for the annual Baton Rouge Antique Decoy Show at the Bluebonnet Swamp Nature Center. Hours are 9 a.m.-4 p.m., and the show’s feature presentation focuses on classic New Orleans decoys and the carvers that added to this tradition of the state’s waterfowl… Continue reading →

Macaluso Fishing Report: Bass still hanging in the marsh

If you set your sights on bass this weekend, then you’ve got options. The marshes south of Bayou Black are loaded with bass. The Verret Basin, the Pearl River and the MRGO area are solid second choices. On the coast, redfish provide action on both sides of the Mississippi River, and trout have… Continue reading →

Outdoors calendar

THURSDAY cca Comite Chapter Banquet: 5:30 p.m., Palubinskas Events Center (note venue change), 10510 Joor Road, Central. Tickets $60, $30 spouses, $25 youths, $500 tables. Call CCA (225) 952-9100. JUNIOR SOUTHWEST BASSMASTERS-DENHAM SPRINGS BASS MEETING: 7 p.m., Bass Pro Shops, Denham Springs. Call Jim Breaux (225) 262-0929/(225) 772-3026. FRIDAY FRIDAY NIGHT COOKIE JAR BASS TOURNAMENT: 7 p.m.-midnight, La.… Continue reading →

Variety of lures helps anglers load up on Bayou Black bass

Advocate staff photo by CHARLES CHAMPAGNEThe old and the new produced on a trip last weekend into the freshwater marshes south of Bob's Bayou Black Marina in Gibson. Clockwise from lower left are an original single spinner 3/8-ounce  H&H spinnerbait rigged with a blue, white and chartreuse skirt, a Yum Dinger, watermelon-pearl color, on a Texas-rigged H20 5/0 super lock hook rigged with the new-for- this-year No. 2 H&H Finesse Colorado blade, and a 3-inch Cocahoe Minnow in the 'cock of the walk' color rigged on an eighth-ounce Double-Eye jig with the new No. 2 willowleaf Finesse Blade. All lures caught bass and the Cocahoe Minnow also can double to take redfish in south Louisiana marshes..

It was an August marriage made in bass heaven, and what happened over the weekend in the marshes south of Bob’s Bayou Black Marina in Gibson reminded of the wedding-day necessity for all brides — “something old, something new, something borrowed, something blue.” The “old” was the single-spin, three-eighths ounce H&H spinnerbait. The “new” was H&H’s… Continue reading →

Young outdoorsmen honored by La. Outdoor Writers Association

Photos provided by the LOUISIANA OUTDOOR WRITERS ASSOCIATION Ava Lemoine, a sixth grader at St. Aloysius Catholic in Baton Rouge, titled her photo "Grand Isle Crabs," and the judges found the color and the composition the top submission among the 18 photographs entered in the annual Youth Journalism Contest sponsored by the Louisiana Outdoor Writers Association and the Louisiana Safari Club International. Lemoine, 10, received her first-place award Saturday evening at LOWA's banquet in Morgan City.

MORGAN CITY — Eleven young writers and photographers from across Louisiana joined the boys and girls winners in the Youth Hunter and Youth Angler programs in a celebration of the state’s school-age outdoorsmen and outdoorswomen Saturday night at the awards banquet headlining the Louisiana Outdoor Writers Association’s annual conference. The 11 boys and girls were… Continue reading →

Macaluso: We shouldn’t mess with Louisiana’s duck success

Since paying close attention to the how a duck season’s dates are figured for Louisiana, then asking the whys for about the past 30 years, it’s amazing how we Sportsman’s Paradise hunters continually want to tinker with success. Yes, there are a few years when our state has not led the country in the number of ducks taken, but… Continue reading →

Outdoors calendar

SUNDAY Tiger Island Bass Club Tournament No. 2: 3 p.m. weigh-in, Bob’s Bayou Black Marina, Gibson. 27TH ANNUAL KREWE OF Hercules FISHING rodeo & FESTIVAL: Final day, weigh-in Houma Air Base Arena, Houma. MONDAY RED STICK FLY FISHERS PROGRAM: 7 p.m., Louisiana Room, Wildlife and Fisheries headquarters, Quail Drive, Baton Rouge. Guest speaker Dr. Vic Tedesco on catching big… Continue reading →

After lengthy debate, LWFC votes to move up waterfowl season eight days

Image provided by the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and FisheriesRichmond, Virginia wildlife artist Guy Crittenden's paniting of a pair of teal won the 2015 Louisiana Duck Stamp Competition and will be the artwork for the state's waterfowl stamp for the 2015-2016 waterfowl hunting season.

Thursday’s debate among the six Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries Commission members went on for more than an hour, and public comment added nearly another hour before the LWFC voted to open the state’s Coastal Zone waterfowl season on the first Saturday in November, eight days earlier than the zone opened last season. Despite the… Continue reading →

Wildlife and Fisheries announces dates for Louisiana waterfowl hunting season

Advocate staff photo by John Ballance - Ducks in flight.

After debating for more than one hour, the Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries Commission voted Thursday to open the state’s Coastal Waterfowl Season on the first Saturday in November and divided that zones evenly between the first and second splits. The move to a Nov. 7 opening date in the Coastal Zone is eight days earlier than it… Continue reading →

Outdoors calendar

THURSDAY LOUISIANA WILDLIFE & FISHERIES COMMISSION MEETING: 9:30 a.m., Wildlife & Fisheries headquarters, Quail Drive, Baton Rouge. Set 2015-2016 waterfowl seasons. south louisiana branch/quality deer management summer seminar: 6 p.m., Wildlife and Fisheries headquarters, Quail Drive, Baton Rouge. Topics: Space Use & Movements of Adult Male Whitetails, Toxic Bait for Feral Hogs, DMAP harvest data No fee. Registration required.… Continue reading →

Fishing results

Bassmaster Elite WADDINGTON, N.Y. — Sunday’s final top 12 from the four-day Evan Williams Bourbon Bassmaster Elite on St. Lawrence River with anglers, their hometowns, number of bass weighed in parentheses (5-bass daily limit), catch weight in pounds and prize winnings. Also listed are bonus winners, Louisiana anglers and Top 10 & Louisiana anglers in overall standings after six… Continue reading →