June 10, 2024

CSF Priority Conservation Funding Protection and Other Pro-Sportsmen Legislation Signed into Law in Louisiana

Article Contact: Mark Lance,

Why It Matters: With the recent adjournment of the Louisiana State Legislature’s 2024 general session, there were several big wins for sportsmen and women in “Sportsman’s Paradise.” Governor Jeff Landry signed into law pro-sportsmen bills that protect conservation funding, allow for the use of dogs to track wounded deer, and expand protections against hunter/angler harassment on all state-owned land.  


  • Act 449, championed by National Assembly of Sportsmen’s Caucuses (NASC) Executive Council Member and Louisiana Legislative Sportsmen’s Caucus (Caucus) Co-Chair Representative Jerome Zeringue, requires the state to reimburse the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) for lost revenue resulting from free and discounted recreational hunting and fishing licenses created by the legislature.
  • Act 220, championed by Caucus Member Representative Gabe Firment, expands the prohibition against the harassment and disturbance of trappers, hunters, and fishermen to all lands and waters managed by the state.
  • Act 272, championed by Caucus Member Representative Jason Dewitt, authorizes the use of dogs to retrieve and dispatch mortally wounded deer with the use of lights except on wildlife management areas (WMAs).

Act 449 is critical to protecting the $40 million for state-based conservation that hunters and anglers in Louisiana generate annually through the “user pays – public benefits” American System of Conservation Funding. This was a priority piece of legislation spearheaded by the Congressional Sportsmen’s Foundation (CSF) in coordination with the LDWF. CSF has pushed the needle on this issue in Louisiana over the past couple of years and led the way in coalescing support amongst partner organizations at both the state and national level. This forward-leaning policy safeguards the ability of the LDWF to maintain adequate funding that is critical to managing resources held in the public trust. It does not impact free and discounted hunting and fishing licenses that are currently on the books. After passing both chambers nearly unanimously and with Governor Landry’s signature, Louisiana now joins Michigan, New Jersey, and Tennessee as states with similar mechanisms to protect state fish and wildlife agency funding from free and discounted licenses.

Act 220 ensures that hunters, anglers, and trappers are protected from harassment on all state lands and waters while engaged in their pursuits. Maintaining access, including protecting folks from harassment while on public land and water, is key to recruitment, retention, and reactivation efforts. Extending harassment protections to all state-managed lands and waters, beyond the current protections for some public lands, gives folks the peace of mind that adequate protections are in place to safeguard them from harassment while on more public access properties.

Before Act 272 was signed, hunters could not utilize tracking dogs or possess a firearm while tracking wounded deer after legal shooting hours. Now, on private property, hunters are allowed to use tracking dogs after legal shooting hours, use lights while tracking wounded deer, dispatch wounded deer even after legal shooting hours, and enter onto other private property so long as they have written permission from the landowner.

CSF applauds the leadership of the Louisiana Legislative Sportsmen’s Caucus and the support of Governor Landry, the LDWF, and our partners on issues impacting hunters, anglers, and trappers. CSF will continue our work to ensure the future of our sporting traditions in Louisiana and elsewhere across the country.

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