Species Benefiting From Restoration:
• Contact Refuge Headquarters for complete
lists of biota
Acres of Habitat To be Restored:
project will engage local students, community members and
visiting volunteers in wetlands restoration through
plantings. At the same time, two substantial areas within two
wildlife refuges near New Orleans will be restored through
plantings, which trap the soil and therefore reverse the
erosion caused by hurricanes in recent years. Moreover, the
project will train a cadre of youth to be restoration
specialists by teaching them the techniques of water quality
and habitat assessment as well as nurturing and growing out
wetland plant species.
The plan is to install mechanisms that trap sediment,
serve as habitat, reverse subsidence by creating a matt of
biomass, and accomplishes these tasks as nature intended:
these mechanisms are salt tolerant plants.
The primary goals
of this project are:
- to use the army of willing participants in the area to plant wetland species at the NWR sites near New Orleans
- to engage and train a cadre of local students and community members to monitor the wetland sites as well as learn how to plant
- to educate visiting volunteers about the urgent issue of wetland loss and restoration in Louisiana while providing them a hands-on restoration experience
The educational component of the project involves four
sessions for each school: First, in the classroom, the
students learn about causes of wetlands loss and methods of
restoration. In their schoolyard they learn to propagate
wetland plants and create a wetland plant pond where they grow
out plants. Next, the students take two field trips to a local
park with lagoons, where they learn why and how to test for
water quality and then get a lesson in habitat assessment.
Finally, the students bring their plants to the wetland
planting site, assess water quality and habitat, and then
The volunteer planting component will be ongoing, but tied to the school program through student involvement.
A local volunteer planting day will be held one Saturday each month and plantings will be coordinated for visiting
volunteer groups during the busy volunteer months of March and June. In the winter months the project will be
focused on the education program, as it is not the best time of year to plant. The students in the spring will
become involved during the grass-planting phase, bringing their plants and helping out at plantings during the
summer as they take place. In the fall, the first group will mentor the new group of students.