Local group shows out-of-towners importance of preserving coastlines

Most anglers who have fished in area lakes will tell you that the coastlines are vanishing.

With the introduction of the Davis Pond Diversion, freshwater from the Mississippi River into Lake Cataouatche and the northern section of the Barataria Basin has helped tremendously. The freshwater has help push the saltwater line southward,  creating a land and marsh buffer between the Gulf of Mexico and us.

The Wetland Watchers, headed by Milton Cambre and Barry Guillot, has helped the citizens of St. Charles Parish become aware of the importance of our vanishing wetlands.

Their main objective was to find an area close to the ecosystem and educate the public to become aware of the importance of our wetlands and the creatures who inhabit the wetlands. This area was located at the end of the Bonnet Carre Spillway next to the LaBranche Wetlands on Lake Pontchartrain.

Most visitors know the area as the peninsula at the end of the levee road on Lake Pontchartrain.

Last week Barry Guillot, Milton Cambre, the Wetland Watchers, chaperons, and 50 students from J.B. Martin and Harry Hurst hosted a group from Rush-Henrietta High School in New York state.

The students from J.B.Martin and Hurst were the instructors for the day.

“It’s amazing to see our Louisiana students teaching out of state students the environment in which we live in,” Guillot said. “It’s important for our student to teach other students how valuable and fragile our ecosystem has become.”

Animals and reptiles on exhibit were gators, turtles, crabs, skink, snakes, crawfish, and eagles. Activities included crabbing with lines and nets, fishing and throwing a cast net.

Next week, a dedication to the Wetland Watchers Park will take place on April 29 at 8 a.m.  Amanda Shaw, who is a Cajun singer and coastal erosion advocate, will be on site for the dedication.


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