Wednesday, June 10, 2020

Free Fishing Days, 2020-21 licenses now available

Each year, wildlife agencies in each state designate a "Free Fishing Day(s)" for the public to fish recreationally in public waters without a fishing license. These events are part of National Fishing and Boating Week, which runs June 6-14, 2020.

This year, Louisiana's free fishing days are this Saturday and Sunday, June 13 & 14.

It should be noted that while there is no cost (license) required to fish on these days, certain species or types of fishing may still require a permit. For example, a Recreational Offshore Landing Permit (ROLP) is required to possess tunas, billfish, swordfish, amberjacks, groupers, snappers, hinds, cobia, wahoo, and dolphinfish in Louisiana waters. This permit is free of charge.

Speaking of licenses... Louisiana annual fishing licenses for 2019-2020 expire June 30th at midnight, after which you'll need a 2020-2021 license. The new licenses became available on June 1st, and are good from the time of purchase thru June 30 of 2021.

Licenses can be purchased in several ways: (1) online at https://la-web.s3licensing.com, (2) at local license vendors, and (3) at LDWF offices in Baton Rouge, Opelousas, Lake Charles, Pineville and Monroe. Acceptable methods of payment made online are Visa, Mastercard, and Discover.

Sunday, June 07, 2020

Cristobal bears down on Louisiana coast

Later today, Tropical Storm Cristobal will make landfall south of New Orleans with peak winds of about 40 mph and gusts up to 60 mph. Heavy rain bands which moved into southeast Louisiana, coastal Mississippi and Alabama, and the Florida Panhandle, will extend northward as Cristobal moves into north Louisiana tonight and tomorrow.

What Cristobal lacks in strength, it makes up for in size. The storm surge from this storm has been significant for a non-hurricane, with as much as 4 feet of water inundating areas from Clermont Harbor, MS, south to Hopedale. Grand Isle has also been inundated from storm surge.

The storm forced the cancellation of the Lafayette Kayak Fishing Club's Louisiana Slamboree tournament, as well as the K&C Central Louisiana bass tournament on Lake Vernon. The timing has also been bad for speckled trout anglers as fishing has been on fire from Grand Isle and Leeville, and out west at Holly Beach and Big Lake. Solid stringers of 14 inch and larger trout were taken since Memorial Day.

The center of the storm is expected to travel along Interstate 49, with heavy rainfall forecast on the east side of the center.  This will likely put a hurt to some great bream fishing now happening across northeast and east-central Louisiana.