Louisiana Deer Regulations May Change Due to Mortality from Hurricane Isaac

Louisiana deer hunters may see changes in the upcoming season regulations due to the impact of Hurricane Isaac’s widespread flooding in August.

A Louisiana man saves a spotted fawn in the aftermath of Hurricane Isaac that hit the state in August.

The slow-moving Category 1 hurricane hit Louisiana in August, moving up from the southernmost tip of the state. Sustained winds wreaked havoc but not as badly as floodwaters due to the torrential rainfall in parishes from New Orleans east to the border with Mississippi.

Louisiana Sportsman reported last week that a Louisiana Department of Wildlife & Fisheries biologist said state officials are reviewing wildlife mortality. The magazine said LDWF Deer Study Leader Scott Durham said any recommendations for deer season changes wouldn’t be made until the October meeting of the Louisiana Wildlife & Fisheries Commission.

Durham said officials believe the hardest hit areas were the swamps around Lake Maurepas.

“I’m thinking we probably had a 90-percent fawn mortality rate,” Durham told Louisiana Sportsman.

Other flooded areas yielded reports of deer and wildlife dead or struggling to survive, with most of the whitetails being “late-bred deer, so those fawns were probably two to six weeks old. Those fawns are born from mid July to mid August,” Durham said. He said one hunting club found 12 dead fawns on a small levee.

Deer at least 1 1/2 years old or older had a better chance of survival, he said, but even those older animals faced problems with flooding and predation from alligators.

For the full report from Louisiana Sportsman, click this link.