Regional Reports-South

Atchafalaya Basin

On steamy summer nights, hunters armed with spears search the bayous and canals deep in the massive Atchafalaya Basin of southern Louisiana for bellowing beasts known as bull frogs. Swamp hunters may take frogs at night from June through March with spring-loaded mechanical frog grabbers, gigs or spears. Slowly search shorelines or weed patches with powerful lights. When light hits a frog, its chin and eyes shine like two dots hovering over a bright splotch. Lights temporarily blind frogs, allowing giggers time to harpoon them. Froggers can catch the amphibious croakers in almost any Louisiana waterway, but the Lake Verret system offers some of the best frogging in the state. Canals and bayous link Lake Verret, Grassy Lake and Lake Palourde at the southern end of the Atchafalaya Basin south of Pierre Part. There is no limit on frogs, but hunters must have a basic fishing license. Bull frogs must be five inches and Lagoon frogs must be three inches. Launch boats off LA-70, at Shell Beach Landing near Pierre Part, or off LA-1, at Attakapas Landing in Napoleonville. Contact: Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries Department (318-948-0255).