Hunting seasons in nine Southeast Louisiana parishes reopened today, although deer hunters will be restricted to shooting only bucks until further notice, according to the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries.

Hunting in the area, covering much of Southeast Louisiana south of Interstate 10, was closed Dec. 18 after torrential rains caused flooding along the coast.

The affected area includes Elm Hall Wildlife Management Area and portions of St. Mary, Assumption, Ascension, Lower St. Martin, Lafourche, Terrebonne, St. James, St. John and St. Charles parishes. The area is south of Interstate 10, west of Interstate 310, north and west of Highway 90, east of Highway 70, and east of Highway 22.

Deer harvest is being restricted to compensate for fawn mortality and decreased productivity expected to occur as a result of this flood event, the agency reported.

The bucks-only restriction will apply to all land within the affected area, including property enrolled in DMAP and LADT programs.