Ducks Unlimited is working to restore 2,550 acres of coastal marsh approximately 2.5 miles northeast of Buras, Louisiana.
The project will combine coastal restoration techniques of marsh terraces and crevasses to optimize sediment capture from the Mississippi River.
Wetlands adjacent to the Mississippi River have suffered extensive deterioration over the past century.
Historically, the Mississippi River had many distributary channels that connected nutrient and sediment rich waters of the river with marshes of the Barataria and Breton Sound Basins. The river also overtopped its banks during flood events, which helped nourish the surrounding marshes with sediment.
Due to flood control and navigation needs, federal efforts to contain the river with levees were initiated in the late 1800s and continue to this day.
The containment of the river, coupled with other sources of wetland loss (i.e., subsidence, shoreline erosion, salt water intrusion, etc.), have had detrimental impacts to the marshes flanking the river.
This project area is located south of the Mississippi River flood control levee system and is still hydrologically connected to the river. Thus, it is an ideal location to enhance river water distribution to create wetlands.
This project will restore and enhance 2,550 acres by converting open water into various habitat types, including mud/sand flats, shallow water ponds, aquatic vegetation beds, and emergent marsh.
It will also nourish existing marshes within the project area.