2010: Project #9002 Elmer’s Island Dune & Beach Community Restoration

CRP Project Page

Project Summary:

Our project site is located on Elmer’s Island Wildlife Refuge in Jefferson Parish in southeast Louisiana, approximately 15 km northeast of Port Fourchon. The project site is located on a strip of beach that separates back bay and marsh habitat from the Gulf of Mexico. The project site is now beach habitat that was historically located further into the Gulf of Mexico (previously known as the “Caminda Spit”) but has now retreated further inland. The Elmer’s Island site has similar physical characteristics and vulnerabilities when compared to Bay Champagne/Fourchon Beach, the location of our small-scale 2008 dune restoration project that was funded by GOMF. Elmer’s Island Wildlife Refuge is one of the few beach habitats in southeastern Louisiana and is a popular fishing, swimming, bird watching, boating, and picnic location. The refuge is managed by the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries and is open to the public during daylight hours. Elmer’s Island is similar to Bay Champagne/Fourchon beach and is subject to over-wash during high tides and tropical storms. Based on the results of the small-scale Bay Champagne/Fourchon Beach project we are proposing to install sand fence (with and without filter tubes; in triplicate) along the eastern end of Elmer’s Island to protect unique and important beach and marsh habitats and to rebuild dunes. Following the installation of sand fencing and filter tubes, the site will be planted with native vegetation.

Project name: Elmer’s Island Dune & Beach Community Restoration
Project number: 9002
Project status: Cancelled
Grant Administrator: Gulf of Mexico Foundation (for NOAA)
Grantee: Nicholls State University
Project location: Elmer’s Island, Jefferson Parish, LA
Grant period: Jan 1 - Dec 31, 2020
Grant amount: $51,912
Land Ownership: State of Louisiana, Department of Wildlife & Fisheries
Lat/Long: Western end (29°10’53.16”N, 90°03’50.57”W)  Eastern end (29°11’26.41”N, 90°02’57.84”W)
Types of Habitat: Beach, dunes, and “back-bay” Spartina spp. and black mangrove Avicennia germinans marsh habitat

Contact Info:
Project leader: Allyse Ferrara, Assistant Professor
Nicholls State University
Department of Biological Sciences
114 Gouaux Hall
Thibodaux, LA 70310

Species Benefiting From Restoration:
• Blue crab Callinectes sapidus
• Brown shrimp Farfantepenaeus aztecus
• White shrimp Litopenaeus setiferus
• Atlantic croaker Micropogonias undulates
• Black drum Pogonias cromis
• Bluefish Pomatomus saltatrix
• Gulf menhaden Brevoortia patronus
• Red drum Sciaenops ocellatus
• Spotted seatrout Cynoscion nebulosus
• Southern flounder Paralichthys lethostigma
• Striped mullet Mugil cephalus
• Atlantic bottlenose dolphin Tursiops truncates
• Loggerhead sea turtles Caretta caretta
• Leatherback sea turtles Dermochelys coriacea
• Black mangrove Avicennia germinans
• Smooth cordgrass Spartina alterniflora
• Marshhay cordgrass Spartina patens
• Bitter panicum Panicum amarum
• Railroad vine Ipomoea pes-caprae
• Gulf bluestem Schizachyrium maritimum

Acres of Habitat To be Restored:
89 acres of beach and dune directly restored; 800 acres of beach, marsh and mangrove habitat to benefit.