LDWF agent awarded as Mississippi Flyway 2022-2023 Waterfowl Officer of the Year

Major Rick Owens and Corporal Joshua Harris. (Photo courtesy LDWF)

Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries enforcement agent was acknowledged as the 2022-23 Mississippi Flyway Council Waterfowl Enforcement Officer of the Year at the Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries Commission’s September meeting.

Corporal Joshua Harris received the Mississippi Flyway Council award at their meeting in Eureka Springs on Aug. 24. Corporal Harris is the first Louisiana enforcement agent to earn the council’s top award for waterfowl enforcement.

“Winning this award for the first time as a Louisiana wildlife agent is very impressive and well earned,” said Col. Rachel Zechenelly. “Corporal Harris has a done a great job of enforcing waterfowl regulations and representing our department and state.”

The Mississippi Flyway Council is comprised of 15 states and three Canadian provinces including Alabama, Arkansas, Indiana, Illinois, Iowa, Kentucky, Louisiana, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Ohio, Tennessee, and Wisconsin, and the provinces of Saskatchewan, Manitoba, and Ontario. Each year the council recognizes one law enforcement agent from each state and province for waterfowl enforcement. They then pick one law enforcement agent from those recipients for their top award.

Corporal Harris has been an LDWF agent for 10 years and is assigned to Union Parish. Corporal Harris patrols include the Mississippi River, the Ouachita River Basin, and eight parishes of flooded agriculture lands. He also patrols public lands including the Upper Ouachita National Wildlife Refuge National Wildlife Refuge (NWR), D’Arbonne NWR, Black Bayou NWR, Tensas NWR, Boeuf Wildlife Management Area WMA, and Russell Sage WMA.

Col. Rachel Zechenelly, Corporal Joshua Harris and Major Rick Owens. (Photo courtesy LDWF)

Corporal Harris is an LDWF waterfowl identification and enforcement instructor for their cadet academies and he provides an annual waterfowl enforcement presentation to LDWF agents to keep them up to date on yearly regulation changes.

Corporal Harris led the state of Louisiana in waterfowl cases for the 2022-23 waterfowl season with 73 waterfowl specific citations. Investigations conducted by Corporal Harris included multiple over the limit of waterfowl citations, migratory game bird baiting violations, non-toxic shot violations, and unplugged gun violations.

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