Field trip requests: As of April 17, all slots are now full for ranger-led school field trips through the end of the school year. Note that teachers and other field trip leaders are welcome to bring groups out on their own to walk the trails, use the Pecan Grove picnic area, and explore the visitor center. If you plan to bring a group on your own, please call the Barataria Preserve Visitor Center at 504-689-3690 ext. 10 to let the rangers know; they will be able to tell you if other large groups are expected when you plan to visit.
Bloomin' in the Bayou Spring Wildflower Walk: Take a leisurely guided stroll along a boardwalk trail and discover the wildflowers of the Louisiana wetlands. Learn some basic botany as a bonus! Free but space limited so reservations required; call the preserve at 504-689-3690 ext. 10. 10:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m. Saturday, May 9.
Exhibit: "I Remember..." highlights the changes that have occured along the Gulf Coast through photographs by Lane Lefort and paintings of bygone days by Marian Brister Martinez. Oral histories available via smart phone share stories from oystermen, scientists, a member of the United Houma Nations, coastal restoration specialists, and more. Produced by the Public Outreach Committee of the coastal Wetlands Planning, Protection and Restoration Act Task Force, a federal, state, and local partnership dedicated to restoring the Gulf Coast. Through June 28. Free.
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. 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. Follow these links for the park's calendar of events, exhibits, and programs; for directions and transportation options; and for accessibility information.
6588 Barataria Boulevard, Marrero (near Crown Point) (If you use a GPS system, doublecheck it with the map since not all systems find the preserve successfully)
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.