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morrisvswildProfile Photo
Hunting in Southeast Louisiana

Pearl River WMA and its Poor Management

I grew up hunting the Pearl River WMA. Over the years I have witness the area close due to high water, only to open back up when the water level dropped below 16.5 feet. The area was closed twice this year, September then in January. Each time this high water occurs Oil Well Road usually remains closed after the reserve is opened. This is understandable as Oil Well Road washes out in a few spots. Once it is fixed Oil Well Road opens for vehicular traffic. Well, the water rose in January causing the area to be closed, only to open just prior to the February HOG season with dogs. Now I'm no hog dog hunter, but I'm a hunter who anticipates a season as do the hog dog hunters. With Oil Well Road remaining closed with no intentions of opening this road until next September, is deprieving the hog dog hunters of access to this part of the reserve, and others who hunt down that road, including me. I road my bike in to hunt and noticed a few areas where the road was washed out. These spots were not that washed out, I road my bike though them without a problem. What concerns me is why can't the roads get fixed in a timely manner, literally a few hours would have it passable. How about making Oil Well Road a 4-wheeler trail after the high water, if its gonna take that much time to fix it. We are in the last month to hunt the area and can't get to our favorite spots without making great efforts. I find that this is poor management by the DW&F. They have the machinery right there to take care of the road, but would rather do it later, after the season is over. They want the hogs to be killed but want to make it more difficult to kill them. I'm just asking to be reasonable with this issue, fixed the road in a timely manner or make it a 4-wheeler trail when the road is closed.
February 11, 2013 at 2:38pm
nitrofishProfile Photo
Posted February 11, 2013 at 3:04pm
Its called money

If you talk to most agents that would say that is a great idea, but it will never happen. The state has to approve the money to fix the road because the money the WL&F uses come from the general fund. That is your delay there and they know the road will wash out again before next year's hunting season. They would have trouble making it a 4 wheeler trail because of 2 reasons. 1) people would think it is always a fourwheeler trail. 2) lack of agents already trying to patrol the area.

Best solution is to make do with what you got and dont relie on WL&F even though thats how many people are able to enjoy the outdoors.

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morrisvswildProfile Photo
Posted February 11, 2013 at 3:49pm

You are correct when you talk about the money issue AND that fact that people would not read the rules and think it is always a 4-wheeler trail. I guess my ideas would be in a perfect world.

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micahguitarProfile Photo
Posted February 11, 2013 at 4:11pm
Oil Well Road

We went through the same thing last year with oil well road being closed. I spoke with a wildlife technician at the gate of oil well road about whether 4 wheelers were allowed when the road was closed. I cant remember what page it was on, but we both interpreted that if a road such as this is closed because of wash out, etc, it was permitted to use an atv in that area. I wish I knew what page we were on, I'll try to look it up again. However, the law could be interpreted by different agents differently. Similar to how I spoke to Federal agents this year about whether hogs could be taken in Bogue Chitto with rimfire during small game season. At first he said yes, but when I quizzed him more on it regarding how the regs read, he changed his mind and said no. It all comes down to agents knowing the laws they are enforcing.

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webfoot83Profile Photo
Posted February 11, 2013 at 5:47pm
Thats good to know

I was headed there saturday to try to get a hog with the .22 mag good thing there are 3,600 other places to hunt hogs in that swamp. It does suck but its not like there are not several ohter options.

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Choupic-ManProfile Photo
Posted February 11, 2013 at 6:02pm

The highways and regular ole streets in La. sometimes take years to get the state out to work on them and we drive them everyday . You think they're are worried about a wma rock rd ? Good luck with that one !

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JIMMY WProfile Photo
Posted February 11, 2013 at 7:08pm

I think they are doing a great job keeping the swamp up with what they have to work with!

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bowhtr1Profile Photo
Posted February 12, 2013 at 2:31am

You rode your bike through once why not just do that. Im sure you would have less hunting pressure back there with the road closed. It will also help you get in shape or stay in shape. I think I would like it.

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morrisvswildProfile Photo
Posted February 13, 2013 at 12:27pm
Bike Ride

@ Bowhtr1, I'm in shape and I actually enjoy the ride as I do this throughout the off season. I, unlike a lot of other people are thinking about other hunters who may not be able to ride a bike and hunt. We pay the money for the license, fix the road for ALL to use. It is nice to hunt the area that few can access, but if I kill a large hog, it will be hell getting him out to the truck, as my bike is a one seater. Yes there is a million other places to hunt in the reserve, but is it so wrong to like one area. Its a gravel road, an easy fix, just do it!

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