Special program: Jean Lafitte: History and Mystery - What did Lafitte smuggle into New Orleans? Why did he help the United States in the Battle of New Orleans? Discover the backstory of the only pirate to have a national park named after him. This program happens indoors at the preserve visitor center at 1:00 p.m. on Saturday, December 6. Free but space is limited so reservations required; call 504-698-3690 ext. 10.
Special program: Beginners Bird Walk - Winter birding in Louisiana means lots of migrants from the north plus fewer leaves on the trees to block the view. Learn to find and identify preserve birds by sight and by sound, then join the worldwide birding community with a lesson in how to use the park's eBird kiosk to report sightings. For beginners age 10 and up, but all skills level welcome. Saturday, December 13, 8:00-10:00 a.m. Free but space is limited; call the preserve visitor center at 504-689-3690 ext. 10 for reservations.
The Barataria Preserve outside Marrero offers a taste of Louisiana's wild wetlands. The preserve's 23,000 acres include bayous, swamps, marshes, forests, alligators, nutrias, and over 200 species of birds (learn more about preserve wildlife here). Boardwalk and dirt trails wind through the preserve; check out the trail map, enjoy a self-guided tour, or explore with a cell phone tour. Waterways can be explored by canoe or kayak; hikers and paddlers can check out the preserve map here. Exhibits at the preserve visitor center highlight how the Mississippi River built Louisiana's wetlands, the national importance of the area, and the relation between the land and its people. Kids can earn a badge with the Junior Ranger program. An environmental education center is used for field trips and special programs. The center's museum store has books, music, children's books, insect repellent, field guides, and more on sale. Admission to the preserve is free. Click here for directions and program listings for specific dates.
6588 Barataria Boulevard, Marrero (near Crown Point)
Events and programs
Wanda Lee Dickey
Follow the link to learn about animals and plants in south Louisiana and remember that you can report all bird and animal sightings at the preserve visitor center to help with park research and management.
You can also follow the results of BioBlitz 2013 (May 17-18), a 24-hour attempt to inventory as many of the Barataria Preserve's plants and animals as possible. Find out about what BioBlitz learned and what the park will do with the information at the BioBlitz page.