man holding a fish he caught in the marsh

All plants and wildlife are protected on National Wildlife Refuges, including Mandalay National Wildlife Refuge (NWR), unless specific refuge hunting or fishing regulations allows take. Hunting and fishing where and when allowed are carefully managed to provide for public safety and sustainable natural resources.

  • Fishing Permits

    Recreational fishing and crabbing are permitted year round in accordance with Louisiana regulations and seasons, from 30 minutes before sunrise to 30 minutes after sunset. Fishing is allowed from shore and from boats in open waterways. Commercial fishing is prohibited. Fishing lines must be attended at all times – nets, traps, and unattended trot, bush, or jug lines are not allowed. 

    See Louisiana state fishing information at this link.  

  • Waterfowl Hunting/Lottery

    How the Waterfowl Lottery Hunt Works

    Lottery Waterfowl Hunts will be held on Wednesdays and Saturdays during the Louisiana waterfowl hunting season. (State youth waterfowl hunt days are on November 7 and 8, 2020).

    Lottery hunts are scheduled to begin on November 14, 2020 and continue through January 23, 2021. Three permittees will be chosen for each hunt date by lottery drawing from applications received at the Refuge office by close of business on Friday, October 16, 2019. Three hunt units North of the Intracoastal Waterway will replace the fixed location hunt blinds used in previous years. One permittee will be selected for each unit. The permitted hunter will have the entire assigned unit to choose where to set up one blind with up to three hunters. Permittees must furnish their own boat, decoys, and necessary equipment. All equipment and blind material must be removed before leaving the assigned unit. Hunters may apply as either a Youth or Adult Group. Youth Group applicants will receive preference.

    Refuge Lottery Waterfowl Hunt permit application deadline: Completed Refuge Lottery Hunt Application must be received by 4:30 PM on Friday, October 16, 2020.

    Applications may be submitted by U.S. mail or hand delivered to 1725 Willow Street, Franklin, LA, 70538; Fax: 337/828-0061; or via e-mail to

    How to Apply for Mandalay NWR Waterfowl Lottery Hunt: Application Instructions (150 KB PDF)

    Download a waterfowl lottery application at this link. (151 KB PDF) 

  • Archery Deer Hunt

    The archery deer hunt will be held concurrently with Louisiana deer season, October 1, 2020 through October 15, 2020* (bucks only) and October 16, 2020 through February 15, 2021 (either sex).

    Bow hunting will be in accordance with applicable State of Louisiana regulations and refuge specific regulations. Hunters are required to sign the annual Mandalay National Wildlife Refuge Hunting and Fishing Regulations for 2020-2021. 

    Hunters may use the Refuge between 4 a.m. until two hours after sunset. Archery hunting will be closed north of the Intracoastal Waterway until noon on Lottery Waterfowl Hunt days (Wednesday and Saturday) during the 2020-2021 State Waterfowl Season and on November 7, and 8, 2020 (State Waterfowl Youth Days). 

    Take of feral hogs is permitted during the archery season.

    The Mandalay NWR Hunting and Fishing Regulations brochure outlines Refuge specific seasons, take limits, and other regulations and when signed, the brochure serves as the Refuge hunting permit and must be carried when hunting on the Refuge. 

    Download your free Mandalay NWR Hunting and Fishing Regulations brochure/permit at this link.

  • Special Use Permits

    Certain Refuge activities, including, but not limited to scientific research and all commercial activities require a special use permit. Permits for research or commercial uses must be secured before any special use activity occurs on the refuge. Priority is given to studies or activities that contribute to the enhancement, protection, use, preservation, and management of native wildlife populations and their habitats.

    To obtain a special use permit, download the permit application at the left sidebar and return completed form to the Refuge manager. Plan ahead and allow 30 working days to process a permit. For more information on the permitting process, please contact the Refuge Manager. 

    Refuge Manager Shelley Stiaes. 985/882-2026 mailing address: U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service 61389 Highway 434, Lacombe, LA 70445