LDWF is conducting another survey of Louisiana's waterfowl hunters asking for opinions on waterfowl hunting zones, season dates, youth hunting dates, and some questions on satisfaction with past zones/splits, satisfaction with the 2011/12 waterfowl season, and Catahoula Lake.
We put out a press release announcing the survey on Friday at:http://www.wlf.louisiana.gov/news/35152
The proposed zone boundaries for the new 3-zone options will affect hunters primarily in southeast Louisiana around Lake Pontchartrain, in the lower Atchafalaya basin, and in northwest Louisiana. But regardless of region of the state, I'd still like to get as much feedback as possible, and one goal will be to link the season date preferences with the region where the respondent primarily hunts. I was confused by past survey data on zones/splits options until I realized that about 80% of Louisiana waterfowl hunters only hunt in 1 zone. So things that are important to me, like increasing hunting opportunity and regulatory flexibility which come with additional zones, aren't very important to the vast majority of our hunters. Season dates within each zone is FAR more important.
Like the 2010 Hunter Opinion survey, we are mailing surveys to randomly-selected hunters, AND we have web-enabled the survey so every interested hunter can participate. If you weren't selected to receive the mail-out survey, you can take the web-enabled survey (it's the exact same survey) at:http://www.wlf.louisiana.gov/hunting/migratory-and-waterfowl
At that link, you can not only find the survey, but there is also reference material that explains what we are proposing. There is a link to a power-point presentation that outlines the considerations in making decisions about zones, splits, and season dates, as well as results from past surveys. There is also a link to the maps of our current 2-zone system and 2 new 3-zone options along with precise descriptions of the zone boundaries and what we are trying to accomplish with those changes.
Agree or disagree with the proposals, I'd like to hear from you. I won't be collecting responses from website postings or e-mails this time like I did in July 2011. That was too overwhelming and time consuming. I still welcome any of your comments, but please participate with the mail-out (if selected) or on-line surveys so I can get some idea of predominant opinions in each region of the state.
Thanks very much,
LDWF Waterfowl Study Leader