Louisiana Sportsman
Andy Crawford, Louisiana SportsmanProfile Photo
Deer Hunting in Louisiana

Major deer-season changes

The Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries Commission today proposed making big changes to the hunting seasons in Areas 1 and 6 to allow February primitive-weapons and archery hunting. However, there are also some real proposed changes to the rest of the season structure to make that happen.

Also, see what Kisatchie National Forest officials are considering in terms of dog hunting.

Read the details on the front page, and then let us know what you think.
March 04, 2010 at 2:30pm
JBProfile Photo
Posted March 04, 2010 at 3:39pm

So, the only changes are the season will be closed for a week in December and we will be able to hunt with Primitive weapons longer? What happened to what was originally proposed?

We are going from a 3 month gun season to a 4 month gun season??? Grrrrrreeeeeaaaaaaat, the deer on our lease are pressured enough with the current seasons, this will sure help.

•   View Reports by JB
iaintrightProfile Photo
Posted March 04, 2010 at 6:30pm

OMG!!! Letís take the hunting schedule and DUMB it up more than it already is. Why even have a bow season that is bucks only? It is hard enough to kill a doe, with a bow, much less a buck. If it's because of shooting does that are still tending yearlings, then move the season back.

I like to get a doe with my bow early, before they are pressured, and then wait for something worth shooting the rest of the year with- pick your method.

The issue is that bucks are rutting LATER into FEB and March. Proof of this is seeing spotted fawns in Nov. and Dec. The issue is NOT being able to hunt with a gun instead of with a bow, until Feb. 13th.

The new proposal is like the Nancy Pelosi of hunting schedules.

•   View Reports by iaintright
rancherProfile Photo
Posted March 04, 2010 at 6:48pm

Think I have to agree with these guys. The season needs to be pushed back a couple weeks, not made longer.

•   View Reports by rancher
DownshiftAndFloorItProfile Photo
Posted March 04, 2010 at 6:51pm

I hunt in area 6 and still don't see the problem with leaving the season exactly how it already is.

•   View Reports by DownshiftAndFloorIt

iaintrightProfile Photo
Posted March 04, 2010 at 7:01pm

Downshift- Are you saying you would rather hunt all of October, than hunting all of February?

•   View Reports by iaintright
trout assassinProfile Photo
Posted March 04, 2010 at 8:28pm

Yeah i don't see what closing it one weekend mid season does... seems like pushing it back in November would be more effective... Also not sure about making the first month of october bucks only but its not a big deal... I do like the gun season having the extra week at the end... the primitive arm extra hunting in february could be good but the guns allowed now are not really primitive so i am not sure... Glad to get more hunting time later in the season but not sure how good it really is...

shouldn't have a major impact though, so i don't think its a huge deal.... honestly it seems that they are just continually adding to the season

•   View Reports by trout assassin
JBProfile Photo
Posted March 04, 2010 at 8:59pm

I was looking forward to the season closing for a month in late November early December. Was hoping it would help combat the nocturnal nature of the deer. During that time, my lease sees very few deer but that doesn't stop all of us from riding all over the place. If the season would close, it might help.

I'm not saying it would be good for everyone, nor am I trying to force my views on anyone else. I was just hoping for something to happen, beyond our control, to eliminate some of the pressure our deer are under.

I thought part of the reasoning for the close during the first few weeks of December was due to the fact that there is very little movement during that time anyway. How is 1 week gonna make a difference?

I would like to know how much influence feed stores and co-ops have on decisions like this.

•   View Reports by JB
buckhunterProfile Photo
Posted March 04, 2010 at 9:33pm

The proposed changes aren't too bad except that after the middle or end of January should be bucks only because all you are doing is shooting the does that have been bread. The arguement to push the season back is because of the late rut which most people are hunting bucks anyway. The best situation would be to start Nov 1 either-sex and go until Feb 28 but be bucks only in Febuary.

•   View Reports by buckhunter
BangFlopProfile Photo
Posted March 05, 2010 at 7:15am

The December split is nothing new - just hasn't been done for a few years.

•   View Reports by BangFlop

KILLER LLCProfile Photo
Posted March 05, 2010 at 7:44am

Do I believe the deer rut into February? YES....Is any of that activity during daylight hours? NO!!!! It doesn't matter if you push back the season. The deer are so pressured by then, they have become totally nocturnal. I also don't like the season being bucks only all of October. I could understand the first 2 weeks, but the whole month? Whats the point? This will be one more change that will confuse new hunters and hurt the sport even more. TOO many regulations and changes. Its too hard to keep up with right now. I hope they dont pass this.

•   View Reports by KILLER LLC
FunGi73Profile Photo
Posted March 05, 2010 at 4:37pm
bucks only

my main gripe with this proposal is the bucks only in October part. Me and my buddies hunt and manage the land we hunt. We have always liked getting our does early with the bows and arrows so that we aren't shooting guns and putting pressure on our food plots. We only shoot mature bucks and it is usually so hot in October that big bucks are strictly nocturnal, so therefore, we are basically doing our doe management in October. I am pretty excited about the 2 weeks in February, though. I would be okay with them making the first 2 weeks of October buck only and give us 2 weeks in February of buck only. Fair enough???

•   View Reports by FunGi73
wschamp98Profile Photo
Posted March 06, 2010 at 8:07am
Major deer-season changes

I applaud WL&F for their efforts to improve our deer seasons in 1 & 6. In my opinion the change will impact the quality of the deer season in those areas dramatically. For quite a while we've been asking for later seasons and though it took some time and research it's finally got a chance. Thanks, WL&F.

•   View Reports by wschamp98
WATER BUCKProfile Photo
Posted March 06, 2010 at 10:08am


•   View Reports by WATER BUCK
JBProfile Photo
Posted March 06, 2010 at 3:22pm

Water buck --- where do you hunt in Area 6? I hunt in Grosse Tete and I can assure you, our deer do not rut ANYTIME in December. For the last 2 years, our deer hardly even rut in January. I went on a squirrel hunt 2 weeks ago. There was more buck sign in the woods then the entire season.

•   View Reports by JB

WATER BUCKProfile Photo
Posted March 06, 2010 at 3:47pm


•   View Reports by WATER BUCK
boug23Profile Photo
Posted March 06, 2010 at 9:29pm
Good Deal

Personally I feel like the changes are for the better. For those folks who are worried about too much pressure for too long a time on their leases my suggestion would be to manage the pressure for the good of the resource. Implement kill rules that make sense as well as access rules for the duration of the season. Well managed leases typically take very good care their deer herds.

•   View Reports by boug23
Made To GOProfile Photo
Posted March 06, 2010 at 9:42pm

West Feliciana Rut = Feb and March.

•   View Reports by Made To GO
swampwoodProfile Photo
Posted March 07, 2010 at 4:39pm
Later Season End?

Well, if they push it back enough, all you 8 pts. or Better guys might be watching Skillet Head Bucks walking around cause you know them horns "gotta fell off" sometime. hehehe!

IMO...All jokin' aside, I think its a bad proposal and I doubt its gonna help anybody kill any better quality deer. If they can't already do it, whats going to make it better, (more time?) the deer are already super nocturnal...maybe they'll make a "Night Season" for headlighters?

I'm all for making it better for EVERYONE not a SELECT few that make big waves of noise. Everyone = the Rabbit & Squirrel Hunters, Dog Hunters (Deer, Rabbit, Squirrel & Birds), the Deer Hunters (ALL Legal Deer), oh, must not forget the "Feral Hog" Hunters.

I'd also like to know what "Science" now tells us we've had it wrong all these years anyways!

Leave it the way it is! It works and understand there are Good Years and there are bad years for everyone, we all are not gonna kill bigger and Bigger and BIGGER wall hangers every year we hunt, that wouldn't be hunting that'd be Fantasy KILLING and DREAMING.

•   View Reports by swampwood
KILLER LLCProfile Photo
Posted March 07, 2010 at 5:23pm

well said

•   View Reports by KILLER LLC

capn philProfile Photo
Posted March 07, 2010 at 8:51pm
deer season changes

I also hunt in Grosse Tete and have been for 40 years.I think I hunt right next to you.There has been rutting activity in late dec and early jan for as long as I can remember.Some years the rut is hotter than others and some years its a little later,but from christmas until about the 15th of jan is when you'll see the most mature bucks come in to the deer processors.There are always some earlier and more later,but the peak has always been at that time.
Remember,we're hunting mature bucks now,not those little 2 year old 4 and 6 points that we use to kill.

•   View Reports by capn phil
JBProfile Photo
Posted March 07, 2010 at 9:29pm

capn phil - I hunt at the end of Sidney Rd. Take a left off I10 and go through the gate at the end of the road. We saw some chasing the first two weeks of January but it was just small spikes and little racks. We were still getting pics of bucks feeding at feeders together the week of Christmas. The majority of our scrapes and hookings were found the middle of January, with a lot of fresh sign in the middle of February.

The last 3 years, our rut has seemed to be later and later. Before that, our rut was the first couple of weeks of January.

We also see spotted fawns into the middle of December.

I really don't care for the latest changes. I liked the idea of it being closed for most of December, but just because the deer on our property are under so much pressure and the season closing would be our only remedy.

There is nothing WL&F can do to make everyone happy so I guess we just have to take what they give us...

•   View Reports by JB
gaugerProfile Photo
Posted March 07, 2010 at 9:34pm

Some very good points made. I gotta agree with capn phil and swampwood.

•   View Reports by gauger
hangemhighProfile Photo
Posted March 07, 2010 at 10:08pm
when do we know if it passes ?

Andy -- when do they vote?

•   View Reports by hangemhigh
bayou_billyProfile Photo
Posted March 07, 2010 at 10:47pm
Looks okay but...

Don't mind if they shift to later dates for area 6 but it kinda looks like they're expanding the season - almost 5 months now with weapon of your choice - esp. with crossbows and more types of guns during primitive these days.

Wondering why area 1 wants in on this now. Next thing you know the rest of the state will want to hunt Feb. too because they feel deprived. At any rate, There might be more hunters in the woods in areas 1 and 6 in Feb. because other zones are closed.

Primitive comes out good on this deal. I'm more of a bowhunter but I think they should leave archery like it is. And maybe take 10-14 days off of all guns in Dec. not just a week.

•   View Reports by bayou_billy

boug23Profile Photo
Posted March 08, 2010 at 7:00am
Area 1

The Area 1 inclusion also puzzles me. Why not create a new area consisting of Iberville, Point Coupee, West Baton Rouge and West Feliciana. This appears to be the area where the data clearly shows a significantly later rut. Also, I'm not in support of a longer season just a later season.

•   View Reports by boug23
cajun1953Profile Photo
Posted March 08, 2010 at 7:01am

A few more years with high water in area 6 below the Bayou Sorrel locks with all the doe days we will not have much left anyway. It was getting good until the doe days all season open up

•   View Reports by cajun1953
BangFlopProfile Photo
Posted March 08, 2010 at 7:19am

I have to hunt another 2 weeks? My wife's gonna kill me.

•   View Reports by BangFlop
trout assassinProfile Photo
Posted March 08, 2010 at 7:30am
Ticket Sales

I have to think this is mainly about ticket sales.... think about it, the extension is largely for primitive arms... anybody who hunts is now gonna be buying that primitive license to get that February hunt... seems like they are doing everything they can to sell licenses... we are progressively getting a longer season and more geared at the advantage of hunting different weapons to get that extra few weeks which props ticket sales....

•   View Reports by trout assassin
capn philProfile Photo
Posted March 08, 2010 at 8:12am
deer season changes

I hunt right west of you.I wish they would leave the season alone,as for anything good coming from WLF,dream on.If we went by WLF rules,we would be killing any buck with bone showing.If it wasn't for the land owners,lease holders and hunting club members we wouldn't have the quality hunting we have in the Choctaw Cooperative.A vocal minority led by an ex WLF employee started this,the same guy that didn't let the 6 pt rule run its course.

•   View Reports by capn phil

Deer Hunter IIProfile Photo
Posted March 08, 2010 at 1:56pm
Area 6 Changes

I hunt south of Ramah, outside the basin and have done so for over 35 years. Mostly, I hunt deer, using compound bow, primitive weapon, and rifle. In my experience, the per-rut act. starts after Christmas with peak of the first rut the 2nd week of Jan. Therefore, I see no reason to change the current deer hunting season in Area 6. If you haven't harvest that big buck (no one cares about the does at this time of the year)by the end of January, then he deserves to live another day. You had 4 monthes to outsmart him.

Also, Area 6 was given the Feb. 1-15 bow season to make up for the taking away of 2 weeks of either sex bow hunting Oct. 1-15. Now it is being proposed to place primitive weapons season on top of the bowhunters Feb. 1- 15. You just as soon do away with the Feb. 1 -15 bow season, if you are going to allow (RIFLES) primitive weapon hunters in the woods at the same time. I have hunted this late bow season the last 3 years and have not seen that elusive 2nd rut in Feb. However, I have seen alot of educated deer that are way to smart to come into bow range.

As for as extending the primitive weapons season into Feb, give me a break, the modern firearms being used in this season are not primitive. They shot modern cartridges at extented distances (up to 250 yards) with extreme precision. This would be nothing more than allowing gun hunting into mid. Feb. Again, I repeat, give the deer a break. So what if they breed in Feb. or March. You had 4 monthes to harvest a deer, let them have a little peace.

You can also expect the number of small game hunters (rabbits and squirrel) to decrease. Most rabbit hunter are only allowed to run their dogs after deer gun season is closed, which in our area is at the end of January. Who is going to keep dogs and feed dogs all year long, in order to hunt for 2 weeks Feb. 14-28. Be realistic, most people pay big club dues to deer hunt, not to rabbit hunt. So the rabbit hunters will get the short end of the deal. We need to be increasing small game hunting, not reducing oppertunities. Remember, most kids (use to be) are introduced to hunting throught squirrel and rabbit hunts.

"Biologist were asked to provide ways to allow hunters to hunt through mid Feb. becasue of concerns of the 2nd rut being missed". I thought "BOW HUNTING" Feb. 1- 15 was deer hunting. Pick up a bow and go hunting, problem solved.

Lastly, the bucks in Area 6 start lossing their antlers in late Feb. How would you feel if you shot a deer think it was a doe, and it ending up being a 2.5 0r 3.5 year old buck. It would make me sick, also, what deer tag would you use on it, antlerless.

Don't get me wrong, I live for deer hunting and welcome everyone. There is enough room for all hunters. But in my opinion, we don't need to hunt every rut, to have a successful deer season. For me, but the end of Jan. I am burnt out on deer hunting and ready to rabbit hunt or start fishing.

Just my humble opinion.

•   View Reports by Deer Hunter II
gaugerProfile Photo
Posted March 08, 2010 at 2:16pm

DH II speaks wise and learneded words. That's about how I feel about the situation.

•   View Reports by gauger
JBProfile Photo
Posted March 08, 2010 at 2:25pm

capn phil --- Persac?

•   View Reports by JB
capn philProfile Photo
Posted March 08, 2010 at 3:07pm
deer season changes

Roger that JB.
DH 11
You hit the nail on the head,If you can't kill a nice buck the way the season is now,you probably need to take up golf.

•   View Reports by capn phil
SwampHuntinProfile Photo
Posted March 08, 2010 at 3:25pm

Hunting season should start on the first day of Fall and end on the last day of Winter!! NUFF SAID!!!

•   View Reports by SwampHuntin

RvilleProfile Photo
Posted March 08, 2010 at 4:48pm
Me too

DH II, I'm with you. Where I hunt we find shed antlers in early Feb. Don't want to hunt bucks without horns.

•   View Reports by Rville
kajunkayakProfile Photo
Posted March 08, 2010 at 8:41pm

You have hit the nail on the head. If they do this the way they want. I am finished and going out of state to hunt, Sick of losing bow days to 45-70.

•   View Reports by kajunkayak
zayclairProfile Photo
Posted March 08, 2010 at 9:23pm
October 1-Febuary 15 DOGS ONLY! BUCKS ONLY!

Kill all my Bucks that way ,nice ones,every year.

•   View Reports by zayclair

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