Wendy Wilson grew up in Bossier City, graduated from Louisiana Tech and more than three decades ago, pointed her compass south, married and became Wendy Billiot, settled down and rearing five children in Cajun country. Making her home in lower Terrebonne Parish in the village of Theriot, she set up camp on the banks of Bayou DuLarge where she spawned a project that involves offering women the opportunity to have a hands-on experience with the coastal
outdoors. Hers is not the first to offer outdoors projects geared for women – the Women in the Outdoors and Becoming an Outdoors Woman programs have been in existence for years. Billiot’s program, however, takes a different slant.
“My program, Bayou Woman Adventures, is multi-faceted in that I design a program for whatever a particular group of ladies wants. I have a U.S. Coast Guard license that allows me to take people out on the water for charter. We not only do fishing excursions; I put together activities that a particular group may be interested in,” said Billiot.
“Bayou Woman Adventures has involved women in a variety of activities from teaching them how to catch, cook and eat blue crabs to taking them fishing in salt, brackish and fresh water to birding tours and dolphin-watch tours. The women have the chance to see creatures they may not get to otherwise experience. While boating to whichever activity the day calls for, they’ll likely see alligators, wading birds, migratory birds in season along with deer, raccoon, nutria and an occasional otter. I’ve taken some groups on boating tours to some of the off-shore islands. In addition,
we’ve done several educational eco-tours where the ladies can see for themselves and learn about why we’re losing the equivalent of a football field of our coastal wetlands every half hour. The women are able to actually see some of the major causes of wetland loss along with some of the things that are working toward restoration. It’s actually a one-of-a-kind eco-tour that is both educational and impressive,” she added.
One interesting fact about Billiot is that she is the outdoors-person of the family. Her husband, a native American who grew up in south Louisiana, seldom fishes or hunts. I have known Wendy Billiot for several years, visiting with her each year at the annual conference of the Louisiana Outdoor Writers Association. An accomplished writer, she is author of a children’s book, “Before The Saltwater Came”; she contributes regularly to area newspapers and magazines and is part of the popular “Hunt – Fish – Talk” radio program.
She has won a number of writing/broadcasting awards from the Louisiana Outdoor Writers Association, giving credence to the fact that this lady knows what she’s talking about when it comes to the outdoors. Her web site has a statement of purpose that encapsulates what Bayou Women Adventures is all about. “Reaching out to woman of all ages who love adventure, love the outdoors, love fishing who want to learn more about being in the outdoors with other women in a safe relaxing atmosphere.” Housing for participants is in a large modern and fully equipped
bayou bungalow along Bayou DuLarge.
Ladies, does this whet your appetite to experience more of what coastal outdoors Louisiana has to offer? A visit to www.bayouwoman.com will give you a virtual tour of what Bayou Woman Adventures is all about. Having known Wendy Billiot for several years, I can assure you that booking an activity with her will be an adventure you’ll want to repeat again and again.
CANEY LAKE – Bass fishing has been fair with best catches made fishing the deeper drops with drop-shot rigs, tail spinners or spoons. Crappie fishing has been best fishing jigs or shiners around the deeper tops. Bream fishing is fair on worms and crickets around bedding areas. Catfishing is fair fishing a variety of baits around the piers and boat docks. For information contact Hooks Marina at 249-2347, Terzia Tackle at 278-4498 or the Honey Hole Tackle Shop
OUACHITA RIVER – The river is falling. Bass have been fair at the mouth of the run-outs where there is a bit of current with crank baits and spinners taking a few. Crappie are around the tops in the river. Jigs and shiners are taking a few. For latest information, contact the Honey Hole Tackle Shop at 323-8707.
LAKE D’ARBONNE – Bass fishing has been fair with some schooling fish hitting topwaters and Rat-L-Traps. Bigger fish are in the deep channels with some caught on jigs, plastics and drop-shot rigs. Crappie have moved off the flats into the channel with jigs and shiners picking up some fishing 15-18 feet deep in 20-25 foot water. Bream fishing is fair around the beds on worms and crickets while channel cats are biting cold worms off the banks. For latest reports,
call Anderson’s Sport Center at 368-9669 or Honey Hole Tackle Shop at 323-8707.
LAKE CLAIBORNE – The crappie are around the deeper tops with shiners and jigs in purple mist or orange patterns picking up some fishing 12 feet deep in 17-20 foot deep water. Catfishing has been fair fishing around the piers and boat docks with a variety of baits. Bream fishing has slowed some with fair catches made on crickets or worms. Stripers are still schooling some but most are being caught trolling white bucktails. No report on bass this week. For latest information, call Misty at Kel’s Cove at 331-2730 or Terzia Tackle at 278-4498.
BUSSEY BRAKE – Bream fishing has been fair on worms and crickets. Bass have been fair around brush on Rogues and soft plastics. Crappie are scattered. No report on catfish. For latest information, contact the Honey Hole Tackle Shop at 323-8707.
BLACK BAYOU – Bass are fair to good around the grass on jigs and soft plastics. Crappie are scattered; bream are fair. Contact Honey Hole Tackle Shop 323-8707 for latest information.
LAKE POVERTY POINT – Catfishing has been fair with mostly smaller fish being caught. Bass, crappie and bream are slow. For latest reports, call Poverty Point Marina at 318/878-0101.
LAKE ST. JOHN –Crappie are quite slow. Bream are scattered and fair. Bass are best early mornings on topwaters. Catfishing is fair to good. For information, call Ken Mahoney at 318- 201-3821.
LAKE YUCATAN – The water is falling pretty fast which has slowed the crappie bite. Some good catches were made last weekend but slow this week. Catfish and bass are slow to fair. For information, call Surplus City Landing at 318/467-2259.
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