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LA: LDWF says alligator violations are on the rise

August 29, 2012

From Fox8Live.com

Baton Rouge, La. - Louisiana's Department of Wildlife and Fisheries says its enforcement division has seen a steady rise in alligator violations over the last few years.
 
Agents have issued 98 alligator-related violations so far this year.  The figure was 60 in 2007 and 2008, but rose to 69 in the two following years and to 80 in 2011.
 
According to an LDWF press release sent Wednesday, "The popularity in outdoor reality TV shows seems to be one of the reasons why there have been more alligator violations in the last couple of years."
 
Most of the violations are classified as possession of an alligator during a closed season, failing to possess a license and possession of an alligator without a license.  And most of the violations stem from a handful of parishes, including St. James, St. John, LaFourche and Terrebonne.
 
"In some of our cases the subjects have admitted to watching a reality TV show and then wanting to replicate what they watched," said Col. Vidrine.
"While these shows offer a high level of entertainment, they do not offer a lot of information on how to legally harvest an alligator."
 
Anyone wanting to report alligator violations should anonymously call LDWF's 24-hour toll free Operation Game Thief hotline at 1-800-442-2511 or utilize LDWF's new tip411 program.  To use the tip411 program, citizens can anonymously text LADWF and their tip to 847411 or download the "LADWF Tips" iPhone app from the Apple iTunes store free of charge.  CitizenObserver, the tip411 provider, uses technology that removes all identifying information before LDWF receives the text so that LDWF cannot identify the sender.

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