Alligator caught in Louisiana Cypress Canal, Salvador WMA in Louisiana

Alligator hunting with WestwegoMan 2013

Alligator hunting with WestwegoMan 2013.

Not just anyone can be an alligator hunter. In Louisiana, it is regulated by the Louisiana Department of Wildlife & Fisheries. Every alligator hunter in the state of Louisiana must have a resident alligator hunter’s license along with a tag, like the one below, for each alligator harvested.

alligator_tag

Alligator tag

On this page, I will take you through my alligator hunt during the 2013 alligator hunting season.

As part of the alligator season, Louisiana has lottery hunts on state WMA’s. I was lucky enough to be drawn for one of those this year, which ran from August 31 through September 13 on the WMA that I was drawn for. The season started out slow but I was able to fill the 3 tags issued.

Being from Louisiana, I know a lot about alligators but was still able to learn quite a few things by experiencing it first hand. The quest, which with the help of a co-worker and a friend, started out by setting out and baiting lines. These were set out and baited with chicken, as you can see in the photo below. The line is suspended over the water and attached to the pole by a clothes pin to allow the alligator to easily pull the bait down.

Once the alligator is caught, he is then dispatched with a .22 cal. For all those PETA people, this was done as quick and humane as possible. wink

Alligator line baited with chicken

Alligator line baited with raw chicken

Below are the 3 alligators that we caught this year. All 3 were in the range of 5′ 3″ to 5′ 5″.

NOTE: All alligators caught must be dispatched. It is illegal in the state of Louisiana to release an alligator unless the hunters quota has been met. There is no picking and choosing to attempt catching something bigger.

Notice the tag attached to the tail of the alligator. All alligators harvested in the state of Louisiana must be tagged immediately.

Alligator caught in Gulf Canal, Salvador WMA in Louisiana

The 1st. alligator, taken on Sept. 2nd. in Gulf Canal on the Salvador WMA

 

Alligator caught in Gulf Canal, Salvador WMA in Louisiana

Dave striking a pose with the first of the gators

 

As the end of the season neared, I started to wonder if I could even tag out. To my surprise, a trip to a different area of the WMA yielded 2 gators in one day. They weren’t the 8 footer that I had my eyes on when we set the lines but hey, we didn’t go home empty handed.

One additional learning experience that we learned… We didn’t need to have chicken that gagged us to the point of…. well, I won’t mention details but…. the next gators came by way of fresh chicken, unlike the rotten, smelly chicken used for the first one that made us almost lose our breakfast. Ask Dave how bad it was. It wasn’t pleasant! I can remember saying to Dave in the early stages of the hunt, as I was gagging, “Dave, put the boat in reverse and get us out of here!” Trust me, it was BAD!

Alligator caught in Louisiana Cypress Canal, Salvador WMA in Louisiana

The 2nd and 3rd alligators, taken on Sept. 11th. in the Louisiana Cypress Canal

I want to thank Dave and Troy for their assistance. We didn’t get to fight that tree shaker but hey, there is always next year.

I guess I should also say that a planned joke was on me. Due to myself being the holder of the alligator license, I was the one, by law, who had to pull the trigger. Therefore, I wasn’t able to use the Troy Landry/Swamp People line “Choot ‘Em Elizabeth”. But on the other hand, they didn’t say it to me either. I guess it didn’t come to mind or, they just aren’t as goofy as me. Either way, Thanks Dave and Troy!!!

 


For informational purposes, the 2013 alligator prices were as follows:

Up to 4′ $10.00/ft.

5′ $15.00/ft.

6′ – $20.00/ft.

7′ – $25.00/ft.

8′ – $30.00/ft.

9′ – $35.00/ft.

10′ and up – $40.00/ft.

For more information on alligator hunting in Louisiana, visit the LDWF website.

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