Deer Season Open in Portion of Plaquemines Parish

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Recent survey work by Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) biologists in Plaquemines Parish indicates a need to open part of the parish's east bank for deer and rabbit hunting. The area opened by this notice had been closed due to habitat damage caused by Hurricane Katrina.

Effective December 23, 2005, deer and rabbit season will open under the normal date and time restrictions, as published in the 2005-06 LDWF Hunting Regulations booklet, in:

That portion of Plaquemines Parish East of the Mississippi River, west of the Braithwaite Golf Course west levee, north and west of the Forty Arpent Canal to River Aux Chenes (Oak River), West of River Aux Chenes to Bayou Garelle, North and West of Bayou Garelle to Joe Graxolet Canal, North of Joe Graxolet Canal To Phoenix, North of the levee at Phoenix.

Surveys revealed heavy over browsing of native woodlands and over browsing of citrus orchards. Biologists also found that the fat reserve levels in the animals tested were low indicating stress. Hunting will remove some of the surplus animals and reduce over browsing, providing more food for the remaining deer.

"As available vegetation declines due to winter weather, it is important to reduce the over browsing that is currently happening," said Dave Moreland, Wildlife Division administrator. "Deer mortality will occur as habitat conditions become poorer and animal stress increases."

The only remaining hunting season closures - relative to storm damage caused by recent hurricanes - still include all of St. Bernard Parish and those portions of Plaquemines Parish on the west bank of the Mississippi River that are south of the Ollie Canal and Ollie Road, as well as those portions of Plaquemines Parish on the east bank of the river, south and east of the area described above.

The hunting season closures still in effect are limited to deer and rabbit hunting in those two specific areas and are effective until further notice.

Hunters should keep in mind that some U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service refuges continue to remain closed in the impacted areas and hunters should contact the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service for information pertaining to these seasons. For the latest information on USFWS hunting season status within Louisiana, call 1-800-344-9453.

As conditions improve and more surveys are conducted, areas that are presently closed may be opened for hunting at some point in the future. For more information concerning the opening of hunting seasons contact the Wildlife Division at 225-765-2346 or go to LDWF's web site at