Public lands offer some excellent primitive-weapons hunting this month.

Lake Ophelia National Wildlife Refuge in Avoyelles Parish is the leader in offering trophy whitetails for primitive-weapons hunters, and lottery hunt weekends are conducted during January.

Fourteen smokepole trophy deer hailing from Lake Opehlia NWR are listed in the Louisiana Big Game Records.

However, hunters for Lake Ophelia NWR's lottery hunts have already been chosen for the hunts scheduled for Jan. 5-6 and Jan. 19-20.

In Concordia Parish, you will also find late-rutting bucks during the January primitive weapons hunt at Bayou Cocodrie NWR in Concordia Parish. The smokepole season there is scheduled for Jan. 4-9. Find regulations at www.fws.gov/southeast/pubs/cochnt.pdf.

Thistlethwaite WMA's January primitive-weapons dates are Jan. 7-13. These are non-lottery dates, so the general hunting public is welcome.

The Sherburne Complex and Attakapas WMA also have scheduled primitive weapons hunts in January. These are scheduled for Jan. 7-13 and Jan. 21-27, respectively.

Farther north, Big Lake WMA offers opportunities at January rutting bucks with a primitive-weapons season scheduled Dec. 29-Jan. 11.

For more information on public-land hunting opportunities this month, review the 2012-13 Louisiana Hunting Regulations available at the LDWF Web site (www.wlf.louisiana.gov).