Louisiana WMAs, Whitetails Still Impacted by Isaac

The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries has reopened Maurepas Swamp Wildlife Management Area, which contains acreage in Ascension, Livingston, St. James and St. John the Baptist parishes and had been closed in advance of Hurricane Isaac’s landfall.

Due to flood water still over the road, the Hope Canal boat launch access road will remain closed until the water recedes, and the road can be cleared of debris and is deemed safe for vehicular traffic. Additionally, Maurepas Swamp WMA users are advised that local parishes have some waterways within and around the WMA still closed. WMA users are advised to consult with the respective parish Sheriff’s Office to ensure the waterways they intend to traverse are open before attempting to utilize the WMA.

LDWF sites that remain closed until further notice include the following WMAs and refuges: Elm Hall (Assumption Parish); Elmer’s Island (Jefferson Parish); and that part of Pearl River WMA north of I-10 in St. Tammany Parish. Storm impacts affecting vehicle access and debris removal are ongoing at sites still closed.

For a complete list of state WMAs and refuges, go to: http://www.wlf.louisiana.gov/wma.

LDWF biologists also are assessing the impact of Hurricane Isaac on the deer populations in parishes flooded by the storm.

Flood conditions created by Isaac’s heavy rainfall moved deer out of normal habitat and in some instances resulted in deer mortalities. Biologists are working to determine the overall effect on the deer herd within impacted areas of the state. Aerial, waterborne and ground surveys will continue throughout September.

The data collected would be utilized by LDWF’s Deer Program manager to develop any recommendations for changes to the upcoming deer season. Any recommendations for changes will be presented to the Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries Commission for consideration at the Oct. 4 commission meeting.