Pointe-Aux-Chenes Wildlife Management Area

Moist Soil Unit Project

In partnership with the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF), we’ve enhanced wetland habitat on every public land managed for waterfowl in the state. Several of these public lands boast tremendous use by citizens and non-residents. One such area is the Pointe-aux-Chenes Wildlife Management Area (PACWMA), a 35,000-acre wildlife management area (WMA) located in southern Terrebonne and Lafourche parishes. Comprised primarily of brackish and intermediate marsh, it provides excellent habitat for a wide suite of wildlife, including waterfowl, wading birds, shorebirds. and secretive marsh birds. Owned and managed by the LDWF, PACWMA is one of Louisiana’s most popular public lands, open to the public for hunting and other recreational opportunities.

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RESTORATION NEED

Located on the western side of the WMA is the Isle de Jean Charles ridge. Much of the isle’s northern portion has been restored to coastal forest and/or is manipulated to provide habitat for doves and dove hunters. The southern end, however, is largely unmanaged and provides limited benefits from a wildlife perspective. LDWF and DU want to enhance approximately 85 acres, creating an intensively managed, moist soil unit for both migratory and nesting birds. If enhanced, this unit could be prime habitat for wintering waterfowl. We will rebuild approximately 10,800’ of levees using onsite material from an adjacent drainage ditch and install three water control structures. 36” culverts with stoplog bays on the managed side of the unit and flapgates on the unmanaged side in addition to a 2,500-gallon-per-minute portable water pump would need to be purchased for the project.

BENEFITS

This restoration project would allow for the flooding of the fields with freshwater during the fall and winter months to provide optimal foraging habitat for migratory birds, including waterfowl. The same features would allow for the draining of the fields in the early spring to encourage the growth of annual grasses for nesting habitat to benefit mottled ducks and secretive marsh birds. LDWF staff based at PACWMA will be responsible for managing the unit. To further enhance the habitat, LDWF staff will set back vegetative succession once every two years on half the site and plant grain crops such as brown top millet. This management regime will ensure proper nesting substrate is available and enhance food resources. 

This project would benefit a number of birds, including several species of greatest conservation need as identified in the Louisiana 2015 Wildlife Action Plan. Some included are mottled duck, clapper rail, yellow-crowned night heron, northern pintail and seaside sparrow. Additionally, the project will provide opportunities for the LDWF Education Program. The program aims to recruit, retain, and reactivate those interested in outdoor activities but have limited access. The project site would be utilized by participants of Wounded Warriors, Becoming an Outdoors Woman, college students and a variety of other youth education program participants.


For more information please contact
Mr. Bob Dew, Director of Development – Louisiana
337.408.3288  •  bdew@ducks.org