Want to learn more about wildlife and the natural and cultural history of the Southeast Louisiana? Join a U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) Refuge Ranger to explore Bayou Lacombe near Big Branch Marsh National Wildlife Refuge.
All canoes and paddle equipment are provided by USFWS. The tours last approximately three hours, beginning at 9 a.m. on selected Saturday mornings. This adventure is geared towards adults, but children 5 and older may attend and children must be at least 10 years old to paddle. The canoes have two seats for paddlers — younger children will sit in the middle of the canoe. Participants should be prepared to paddle for up to two to three hours on flatwater with several stops to discuss wildlife and natural history. There is no current, and occasionally you may need to paddle into the wind. Participants should be dressed for an outdoor activity.
Spring Canoe Tour dates are:
Saturday, March 9
Saturday, March 30
Saturday, April 6
Registration for tours opens Monday, February 25, 2019 at 8 a.m. Registration is first come, first served and requests received before that date and time will not be accepted. To better serve the community, first priority will be awarded to visitors who have not participated in the 2018 canoe tours. These tours fill up fast, so register soon.
- Reservation requests made by email and phone are time stamped and processed in the order in which received.
- To register by phone, you must leave your phone number and email address as well as the names of the individuals that you would like to register, and the age of any participant under 18.
- Register by email to Refuge Ranger Jo Anne Dolan at firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone: 985-882-2015.
From I-12: Take Exit #74 (LA Hwy 434). Go south (towards Lacombe) on Hwy 434 till you hit U.S. 190. Turn right (towards Mandeville) and go 4.7 miles to Cane Bayou and cross the bridge over the bayou.
Park at boat launch.
The Friends of Louisiana Wildlife Refuges, Inc., is a non-profit organization that supports the mission of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. Fees and donations are used to maintain canoe equipment and hire seasonal interns to lead the tours.The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is the principal Federal agency responsible for conserving, protecting and enhancing fish, wildlife and plants and their habitats for the continuing benefit of the American people.
The National Wildlife Refuge System, managed by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, is the world's premier system of public lands and waters set aside to conserve America's fish, wildlife and plants. Since President Theodore Roosevelt designated Florida's Pelican Island as the first wildlife refuge in 1903, the System has grown to more than 150 million acres, 556 national wildlife refuges and other units of the Refuge System, plus 37 wetland management districts.
Stay up to date on tours and events by following the Southeast Louisiana Refuges on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/SoutheastLouisiana/.
Photo: Paddlers explore the bayou and marsh at Big Branch Marsh National Wildlife Refuge.