Hunting season over? Not quite _lowres

Photo provided by CHRISTOPHER JONES Photo provided by CHRISTOPHER JONES Pure pleasure It took a few years, but Missy Jones’ family got her to the coast for her first marsh fishing trip. Jones shared the trip to Hopedale with her son, Chris, and grandsons, 8-year-old Finley Jones, left, and 12-year-old Cazes Jones, right. The Hopedale-Dealcroix area has been producing trout and redfish, and, along the southern Terrebonne Parish marshes, is one of the ‘hot’ spots along the Louisiana coast leading in the usually productive month of May.

Even though morning’s chill will greet awakening Louisianans on Saturday, it’s not the approach of fall.

This spring “hangover” — and we don’t get too many days in May with morning temperatures in the 50s — comes on a day when nearly all outdoorsmen around think about wetting a line in their favorite fishing spot.

Hunting season ended Sunday when the last of the turkey hunters left the woods. Right?


There are some among us who will use this day and the next several to hunt squirrels in this fifth year of a spring squirrel season.

“Most of us just want a chance to work our (squirrel) dogs,” Carlton Savoy said the first year the state Wildlife and Fisheries Commission approved spring dates. The commission acted on recommendations from state biologists that showed a relatively low hunter turnout wouldn’t diminish squirrel populations, and that the May season would come between this species’ two major rutting periods.

The first three seasons came during days when afternoon temperatures reached into the upper 80s, even near 90, and hunter effort was low. Last year’s season came after a major cold front swept through the state and sent morning temps into the 40s.

It was ideal time for the hunters, most of whom said they weren’t in the woods to bag a limit, but, like Savoy, were using the May 2-24 season to get in extra work for what’s become an ever-growing number of hunters using dogs to pursue bushytails in the fall and winter months.

The May 2-24 season is for private lands only: There is a May 2-10 “with or without dogs” season on some 41 of the Department of Wildlife and Fisheries’ wildlife management areas. And hunters need to note that this season is closed on the all Kisatchie National Forest lands, national wildlife refuges and Corps of Engineers properties.

And, hunters need to note that the daily limit is three, not the eight allowed during the fall-winter season.

A continued plea

Camp and home owners along Belle River and other settled locations in the Verret Basin have called The Advocate pleading with boaters to heed the no-wake zones established by the Assumption Parish Police Jury two weeks ago.

This Basin’s waterways have risen on rains throughout early April and continue to rise after Monday’s deluge.

Property owners said water is over most bulkheads and boat wakes are washing more water under camps and homes.

Boat owners are responsible for damage caused by wakes from their boats.

More for hunters

David Moreland will accept, then score, all antlers taken during the recent season for scoring in the annual Bowie Outfitters Big Buck Contest until noon Friday at the store on Perkins Road.

That deadline precedes Saturday’s 7th annual Big Buck Awards Day at the store. Winners in seven categories will be announced and there will be hourly door prizes along with a one-day sale on selected hunting items.

Moreland led the campaign to get all antlered deer scored by getting the store to award the big prize in a drawing from among all who entered their bucks.

“This year there’s a gun package or a bow package for the winner of the drawing to select,” Moreland said, adding that the winner must be at the store when the name is drawn. The awards day will run from 10 a.m. until 1 p.m. Call Bowie’s at (225) 766-1200 for more info.

Those Tigers

Remember the story about the LSU Bass Fishing team and the trip Jarod Hughes and Adam Gotangco made wearing the purple and gold to Lake Texoma for the Boat US Collegiate Bass Texas Shootout in Denison, Texas?

They finished ninth among the near 50 teams, and only 24 of those teams weighed fish because Texoma’s water was high, rising and muddy.

Hughes, of St. Amant, and Gotangco, of Lafitte, had three bass weighing 5.66 pounds. UL-Monroe’s team, Tyler Craig and Blake Alford, had three fish weighing 5.64 pounds to finish 10th.

Tennessee-Chattanooga’s Patrick Hoskins and Dillon Falardeau won with a five-bass, 13.23-pound total.

Iatt drawdown

The Department of Wildlife and Fisheries and the Grant Parish Police Jury issued an advisory earlier this week about a drawdown on Iatt Lake scheduled to begin May 14.

The move is control nonnative and “nuisance” aquatic vegetation.

The announcement included:

A initial lowering of the lake’s water level by six feet “... from pool stage to evaluate the lake bottom. If necessary, the lake will be drained an additional two feet in order to successfully dry out nuisance vegetation;”

Additional control recommendations could extend to the use of herbicides, and the stocking of as many as 49,000 triploid (sterile) grass carp;

An advisory that the lake will not be closed to fishing, but boaters should “... use caution during the low-water period ... boat lanes will not provide normal clearance for underwater obstructions;”

And the control structure will remain closed no later than Oct. 15.