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Duck Guiding Operation in Pas A Loutre WMA

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For about 9 years there has been a large houseboat parked near Southeast Pass in Pas a Loutre out of Venice. It started as a houseboat, and a few surface drives. Each year the operation grew larger. Now it affixed to the actual land only a few hundred yards from the WMA. It has a helicopter that drops off and picks up a bunch of camo clad goons, multiple excavators ( I have no clue what these things are doing), upwards of 10 surface drives, metal boat sheds, etc. I had heard rumors that this was owned by the owner of Silver Slipper Casino, and is used to fly out fat cat high rollers from the casino to Pas A Loutre and put them on guided duck hunts in the WMA.

I am wondering if anyone can confirm this, or if that's just the urban legend.

Obviously guided hunts are illegal on public WMA. It would be doubly sacrilegious if a Mississippi entity was profiting by raping a public Louisiana WMA. If this is actually the Silver Slipper Casino, then my guess is that no money is directly crossing hands for the guide service, and it is offered as a kickback for spending a bunch of money at the craps table. Either way, it seems that something is rotten in Denmark. It also would seem that one of our fine state politicians would have to have been greased in order to allow this to happen.

The result of this compound down there is essentially the decline of hunting in Pas a Loutre. You can go look at that aerial surveys and the decline in population correlates with this compound showing up. It essentially allows 24/7 pressure on the birds with a cavalry of surface drives running in and out of every pond on the WMA looking for birds to put their customers on, and it also is almost impossible for the guy in a bay boat leaving from Vtown in the morning to compete with the batallion of 'hunters' who are waking up in Southeast pass.

Does anybody have any solid intel on this establishment? Am I way off-base? Can anyone with money just go do this on any of the state's public WMA's?
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Re: Duck Guiding Operation in Pas A Loutre WMA
1. Is that location on the WMA or a private in holding?

2. The WLF does lease out at least 5 house boat mooring locations on or near that WMA - on yearly bids.

3.while they can take customers(of another endeavor) they cannot be compensated in any way for taking them hunting in the wma.

4. there are several groups that moor houseboats very close to wma or on private in holding.
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Re: Duck Guiding Operation in Pas A Loutre WMA
1. If Southeast pass is part of the WMA, then it is in Southeast Pass, so yes. If Southeast pass is not considered Pas A Loutre, then its about 400 yards off of the boundary.

2.A houseboat is one thing. This is a whole other story. This is a 100 foot houseboat. A 100 foot wooden dock. a 130 foot metal barge. Multiple metal boat sheds. A helicopter for bringing clients in and out. at any time during duck season there will be 15 boats tied up here.

3. If this is the casino bringing high rollers here in exchange for gambling, then I see no difference between that and compensated guiding.

This type of thing is so obviously detrimental to a wma. It just boggles my mind that it is allowed by wlf.
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Re: Duck Guiding Operation in Pas A Loutre WMA
Looking at the WMA map, it looks like this operation is outside the wma boundary on private land. That is assuming they stay outside the boundary to hunt and not cross over.
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Re: Duck Guiding Operation in Pas A Loutre WMA
I have heard the operation is owned by a man that has an offshore towing company. We have a camp close by and do agree that they hunt everyday. They hunt private property as well as land they lease. My friends in the other camps complain that they have essentially taken over areas that they hunt. They are in the WMA very early in the morning everyday. They also hunt in the afternoons off Pass a Loutre near Swansons. They could care less about the 2:00 cutoff for mud motors. Last Sat morning three guys shot over 100 times. That afternoon they shot another 100 or so times. Then on Sunday morning they shot another 100 or so times. All this shooting out of the same pond. I heard maybe 50 shots from the Refuge from 5 groups. You tell me what's going on. It's definitely a commercial operation but I think it would be hard to prove because these are clients/ customers from the towing business.
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Re: Duck Guiding Operation in Pas A Loutre WMA
yes that is a towing company. These guys have deep pockets. The area that they are set up on is not wma. And they have 2 big sections leased from a local land owner. I think the name is Leboufs towing. They are running guide operation out of it. I actually was at Cypress Cove Marina when a 40 ft cabin aluminum boat pulled up with around 10 to 15 people letting them off. I talked to the guy alittle and he told me he was affiliated with that operation. I passed a comment to him and said man that's a big group huh. He chuckled and said that that was a smaller group. These guys showed up several years ago with a push boat with a boom and 5 or 6 mud boats and would spend the season down there. Then he got on his helicopter flew to the property owners house pulled out his check book and said how much. Since then they have been set up there and running a major operation. Bottom line guys is the waterfowl sport is constantly growing, the amount of hunters in your area that you use to never see a soul is flooded now. Very minimum amount of huntable area is shrinking and its getting to be a rich mans sport. Basically if you can find area available and have serious money to pay for whats available. Pay someone to patrol your several thousand acres daily, you can enjoy your duck season. Without that its get in your boat at 4 am or earlier try and get to your spot before the other 15 people try and get there and hope they don't ruin your hunt. Only gonna get worse
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Re: Duck Guiding Operation in Pas A Loutre WMA
Also I can promise you if the ducks on there area are not there then wherever the ducks are they are hunting it. The areas they have leased is not that much for that many people daily. Also everything else in that area is wma or refuge for the most part on other side of Pass o Loutre. You can put 5 or 6 people in the area they have leased and put pressure on it. They are down there every day. Whether or not they are guiding or have a slew of clients is unknown. But as I posted in post above I was told at the marina they were guide trips. Years ago by Fort Jackson the Beau Rivage leased out a area paid double what the local guys were paying and pushed them off of areas they were hunting for years. Posted more land than what they had leased and catered to all the clients. Seaplanes bringing the money spenders in, a pile of mud boats tied up to the boat, several airboats, and a staff of people on the boat for the guys with the money . Like the saying goes it is what it is.
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Re: Duck Guiding Operation in Pas A Loutre WMA
Well. The libertarian in me says that if these guys are just rich guys and they are confining themselves to the private property which they legally purchased, then good for them. BUT any of us who have hunted down there a lot know that these guys are hunting the wma too. That means they are guiding on the WMA. So I put this on the State WLF agents. They should be on those guys like white on rice, just by the very proximity of their operation to the WMA. And it doesn't seem like they are paying attention to these people to make sure they keep their as*es off of the WMA.

State WLF down there needs to put pressure on these guys and everything will be fine. You know for a fact that if these guys were anywhere near Delta NWR, the fed agents would be so far up their as*es that they would be afraid to leave the houseboat.
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Re: Duck Guiding Operation in Pas A Loutre WMA
if they are taking customers of their OTHER businesses - they are not 'guiding'
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Re: Duck Guiding Operation in Pas A Loutre WMA
Valid point Choup. While I do think it's a slippery slope, that is how WLF would be forced to look at it if there is no money transferring for the purpose of duck guiding.
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Re: Duck Guiding Operation in Pas A Loutre WMA
I have seen these guys in surface drives on Delta, which is illegal , not only hunting in the morning but coming in at 11:30 after we had a slow hunt and setting up for an after noon hunt numerous times . I have complained to the feds but they ,as far as I know , never followed up on it . This same group brings birds back to the houseboat ,stays for 30 or 40 minutes ,and heads back out to hunt again , saw all this while fishing after our hunt . Some ponds we USED to hunt off of Pass a Loutre have been ruined by these guys pounding on the birds all day , everyday, and constant use of surface drives through these same ponds . We also observed that helicopter being used to spot where the birds were using numerous times . Something needs to be done about this flagrant abuse of OUR resource !
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