Please Sign In


New To Sportsman Network?

Make a quick trip to the Chef this morning. In comparison to other marsh habit in Southeast Louisiana, the Chef just looks health and always has plenty of grass that provides the gin clear water which is my favorite ingredient for sight fishing Reds. Today’s water wasn’t the best and as I meandered deep into the marsh, I stumbled upon a wooden cross with a message. It is a true tribute to a Father and an Outdoorsmen and I was instantly transported back to being an 8 year old boy on my first duck hunt. This will bring a tear to you eye. Happy Father’s Day. Shoot’m up!

June 20 at 3:13pm
A comment titled: Re: Waterfowl FEED TAG Your thoughts?? in response to a report titled: Waterfowl FEED TAG Your thoughts??

Legitimate Agricultural Practice?

I think the crux of the issue is still a conversation worth having; is flooding a corn field (or millet, sorghum, etc.) a legitimate agricultural practice? I ask that to differentiate from rice production, which requires flooding at multiple points.

If flooding these types of grain fields is not for agriculture, then it’s being done solely for the purposes of attracting waterfowl and seems to fall within the definition of baiting. No issue with landowners wanting to attract waterfowl to their properties, but I think they should have to hunt within the regulation that limit how close hunters can set-up on supplemental feeding (certainly not in the middle of it).

Really think South Louisiana duck hunters should start pressing our local chapters of DU and Delta on this issue.

October 01, 2017 at 9:22am
A comment titled: Re: Biloxi WMA in response to a report titled: Biloxi WMA

Just left the Slidell LDWF Public Meeting. Only two comments on Biloxi. This is a proposed change (not a done deal). The Department is still working with the landowner to limit (what the landowner perceives) as damage to the land due to 'surface drives'. It would seem some restrictions will be imposed.

Possible alternatives mentioned - Creating a large LAA (similar to Pass-au-Loutre), allowing surface drives for handicapped and youth hunters, allowing surface drives on establish navigable bayous.

Comments can still be accepted through April 2, submitted directly to Steve Smith, LDWF Wildlife Division, PO Box 98000, Baton Rouge, LA 70898-9000, or via email to ssmith@wlf.la.gov .

February 26, 2015 at 8:56pm
A comment titled: Which month(s) has the highest take? in response to a report titled: Arkansas duck season dates 2014-2015

Purely my own observations in hunting the marshes around Venice and the Northshore, but “The Opening Day” in November (9 times out of 10) is the best day of the year. I think the population estimates above are really surprising because it shows while there could be as many as twice the number of birds down in January, (correct me if I’m wrong) hunter’s takes are actually lower in January?

I’m guessing “hunting success” has more to do with pressure than the calendar. Birds have September, October, and early November to congregate in our southern marshes. It’s my guess that the lack of success in January (given the number of birds down) may be due to the birds roosting were hunters aren’t. So perhaps the longer we hold off opening day, the longer (or more frequent) higher bag limits hunts we’ll have in later November/December?

September 19, 2014 at 1:20pm
A comment titled: Then where are the ducks? in response to a report titled: It\'s not rocket science

Per the data Mr. Reynolds provided, the numbers of snow geese and mallards wintering Louisiana is down by 20-25% (of total migrating population). That's significant. I'm just the average duck hunter, please tell me why this is occurring. That data doesn't even take in to account the lack of Canada geese that migrate to Louisiana (which are now a penitence of what it was 30-40 years ago). I have no data to substantiate it, but the general conversation among Southeast LA duck hunters was a lack of grey ducks in 2013.

I feel like this is a negative trend that Louisiana duck hunters can't afford to let continue. Implying that other hunters who have legitimate concerns about this perceived trend are somehow, 'delusional and refusing to listen to reasonable' is arrogant and not beneficial.

Not scientific data, but I've hunted the mouth of the river every year for more than 20 years. The 1996 & 1997 years where biblical in the numbers of ducks on opening day; truly unsurpassed. But again from Mr. Reynold's data, the 1996-2000 numbers of ducks (3.8M) are about the same as the 2014 number of ducks (4.0 M). Opening day this year in Venice was sparse. If we have (per Mr. Reynold's numbers) more duck in 2014 than we did on average in 1996-2000, then where are the birds?

It's not erosion or land loss either. In 2005, after Katrina with NO submerged aquatic vegetation opening day limits where still easy to find. The marsh also held together quite well (Delacroix is another story/topic).

Perhaps I'm biased, but I believe we should have the ducks; HELL all the ducks and geese. Mother Nature saw fit to establish the ritual hundreds of years ago and I want it to remain that way. I don't want to go to Illinois to shoot gray ducks! I believe that its man's agricultural process that are manipulating the migration ritual. It's not delusional to have a theory that 20-25% of migrating waterfowl could be getting Short-stopped before wintering in Louisiana.

I don't have the time or resources to conduct scientific studies on the issue, so I'm just guessing. But I do know that a lot of tax dollars are generated from duck hunting purchases and licensing. As a Louisiana Duck Hunters I think we need to start complaining so that our taxes we be used to finds ways to compete with agriculture north of us, change laws regarding these 'baiting' practices, or find some other ways to maintain what Mother Nature saw fit to establish.

May 27, 2014 at 8:30pm
A comment titled: Decline in Wintering Waterfowl in response to a report titled: It\'s not rocket science

Mr. Reynolds, please correct me if I'm misreading the charts you provided but over the last 20 years Louisiana's snow goose numbers are down by 25% (relative to the total population) and mallards are down by 20% (relative to the total population). I would also give you my colloquial opinion that grey ducks are following this trend. I've only seen your duck survey counts published so what was Louisiana's harvest of waterfowl in 2014; greys taken? The lack of grey ducks this year was surprising to a lot of duck hunters. It's concerning that the waterfowl trend over the last 50-75 years has been a declining percentage of waterfowl wintering in Louisiana - Canadian Geese, Mallards, now Greys.

With reports of great numbers of breeding pairs in the summer of 2013, but a lack luster arrival for hunting season the average hunter's got to conclude that the ducks are being produced but they aren't making it to South Louisiana.

The idea of Short-stopping waterfowl was first suggested in the 60's with the decline in the number of Canadian Geese wintering in Louisiana, so this certainly isn't a new concept. I believe that the 'habitat management' you referred to is contributing to this problem. On that issue, flooding a 1000's of acres of unharvested millet, soybeans, and corn has nothing to do with agriculture (unlike farming rice which requires it); it's about attracting waterfowl. If 'habitat management' wasn't working to attract waterfowl then farmers/hunters would stop doing it. The shear fact that more and more 'habitat management' is done North of us each year's means it's working. Therefore, you have to deduce that more and more waterfowl will continue to winter North of South Louisiana.

Now perhaps South Louisiana duck hunters can't control anything North of our borders, but what about enhancing habit here in the deep South? I would love to see DU and/or State WL&F invest our Louisiana dollars in supplement feeding programs in the WMA's and Federal Refuges in our State. Keep those areas off limits to hunting, but at least we'd be able to compete with 1000's of acres of millet, soybeans, and corn North of us.

May 26, 2014 at 8:57pm
User has no ads at this time.