The Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries Commission on Thursday proposed several changes to future hunting seasons and Wildlife Management Area regulations — including new deer harvest limits in Deer Areas 4 and 10.
Additionally, the 2017 teal season would move from the final three weekends in September to the last 16 days of that month, and deer and turkey hunters would have only 72 hours to validate their tags after harvest instead of seven days.
Additionally, the daily bag limit for pintail would go from two birds down to one.
Public comment on the notice of intent will be accepted at February and March Commission meetings, as well as by mail and email until March 5 to Steve Smith, LDWF Wildlife Division, P.O. Box 98000, Baton Rouge, LA 70898-9000.
Some of the proposed changes include:
• Changes in deer seasons in Deer Areas 4 and 10, with the elimination of bucks-only days and moving the entire season to either-sex harvest. Also, changing season limits in these areas from a limit of six (not to exceed three antlered or four antlerless deer), to a limit of three (not to exceed two antlered or two antlerless).
• Changes in deer seasons for Deer Area 7, eliminating bucks-only days, and changing the entire season to either-sex harvest while maintaining the six-deer season limit.
• Modification to water level benchmark closure language to facilitate reopening the season at a lower level than the closure level in Deer Area 5.
• Adding water level benchmark closure and reopening language for certain roads on Dewey Wills WMA.
• Change in reporting time period for the validation of deer and turkey tags from seven days to 72 hours following harvest of deer or turkey.
• Implementation of shot restrictions for dove hunters on WMAs and on LDWF leased dove fields, restricting shot to non-toxic shot, size 6 and smaller.
• Removal of restrictions on weapons that can be carried by deer hunters for personnel protection during primitive seasons on private lands. Hunters must still abide by primitive weapon rules as previously defined in Louisiana hunting regulations.
• Addition of Small Game Emphasis Area to Pomme de Terre WMA.
• Addition of available days of opportunity within the Small Game Emphasis Areas on Richard K. Yancey and Sherburne WMAs.
• Addition of youth squirrel season on Pomme de Terre and Grassy Lake WMAs, to be held the fourth Saturday of September for two days.
• Elimination of live transport permits for feral hogs during February hog dog seasons on WMAs.
• Modification of opening day of statewide turkey season from the last Saturday of March to the first Saturday of April.
• Modification of teal season to change from the last three weekends in September to the last 16 days of September.
• Change in daily bag limit for pintail from two to one.
• Change in youth age requirements for youth waterfowl seasons, from 15 years of age and younger to 17 years of age and younger.
• Elimination of Experimental Quality Deer seasons on WMAs.
• Adjustments to deer seasons on Bodcau, Bayou Macon, Boeuf and Dewey W. Wills WMAs.
• Addition of opportunity for youth deer and squirrel hunting on Kisatchie National Forest.
LDWF will also collect public comment at public hearings to be held Feb. 20-March 1 throughout the state. Locations and times for those meetings will be announced later this month.