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Alligator season will soon be underway in Louisiana.  This year's season is scheduled to run from August 25 to October 30 via the alligator lottery harvests on 19 LDWF Wildlife Management Areas (WMAs), 28 public lakes and one U.S. Army Corp of Engineers (USACE) property.

Thoughts of alligator hunting in Louisiana conjures images of Troy Landry hollering Choot 'Em on a secluded stretch of bayou in the extremes of South Louisiana, but ironically, in 2020, the most successful areas for alligator hunting in the Bayou State were all in North Louisiana.

Each year, eligible hunters apply for permits to hunt Louisiana's public bodies of water and to aid in their decisions for which lake to apply, they are provided with the actual success rates for each area from the previous year.

Looking at the actual numbers from 2020, Cross Lake was the third highest performer in the entire state.

According to the data released by the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries in their 2021 LDWF Alligator Harvest Lottery Choices, Shreveport's own water source, Cross Lake, was the third highest performer in 2020 for the whole state in regards to the success rate of alligator hunters.

Of the forty eight Wildlife Management Areas and public lakes governed by the LDWF, Cross Lake's alligator hunters scored a whopping 58% success rate. This means that of all the hunters and all the permit tags provided to those hunters, 58% of those alligators were successfully harvested.

When you consider the amount of Cross Lake that lies in heavily populated areas, this news is somewhat bittersweet. Of course, alligator hunters think it's amazing, but on the flip side, we see that our own Cross Lake is teeming with alligators and those living in the more remote areas of the lake should be vigilant as they look out for possible gator encounters. Please note, I'm not talking about some Hollywood version of a Lake Placid encounter. Just beware that the gators are there and sometimes they appear where they are least expected.

The only areas that top our own Cross Lake are Lake Bruin in Tensas Parish in Northeastern Louisiana with a 63% success rate and Kepler Lake which is another lake here in Northwestern Louisiana, only about 5 miles from Castor, and it scored slightly higher than Cross with a 59% success rate.

Other area lakes that scored well include Cypress/Black Lakes with a 47% success rate, Lake Bistineau with a 34% success rate and Wallace Lake with a 27% success rate.

Good luck to all our area hunters and Choot 'Em!!!

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