Resource Management

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Invasive plant control: The biological integrity of the refuge is threatened when exotic plants invade native habitats. Species such as Chinese tallowtree, Chinese privet, Chinaberry and Japanese climbing fern are just a few of the terrestrial exotic plants that refuge staff fight to eradicate. Aquatic invasive plants are a large threat in Black Bayou Lake itself, with Salvinia and water hyacinth being the two biggest concerns. The refuge partners with Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries to spray aquatic exotics while refuge staff concentrates on the treatment of terrestrial invasives. 

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Water level management: Water levels of Black Bayou Lake are managed by the city of Monroe because the lake is owned by the city and is used as a secondary water supply for Monroe residents. The refuge and the city work together to implement a management plan that benefits the city's water needs while also benefiting native plants and wildlife. Water levels on the small demonstration ponds and at the photo blind are manipulated by refuge staff to promote natural preferred waterfowl plants such as Bidens, sprangletop, millet, and smartweed.

Forest Management: Refuge staff monitors the forest for reforestation survival, condition, forest structure and integrity. To ensure habitat is optimal for priority species, refuge staff may prescribe treatment to the forest to reach desired forest conditions. Treatments may include the thinning of trees to promote regeneration, understory structure for nesting songbirds and browse for resident wildlife.

Wetland protection: All refuge management decisions are based primarily on the protection of Black Bayou Lake and its surrounding bottomland hardwood forest. Water level management, invasive plant control and regulation of public use are all implemented with wetland protection in mind.

Trapping Occurs on this Refuge:
Trapping is a wildlife management tool used on some national wildlife refuges. Trapping may be used to protect endangered and threatened species or migratory birds or to control certain wildlife populations. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service also views trapping as a legitimate recreational and economic activity when there are harvestable surpluses of fur-bearing mammals. Outside of Alaska, refuges that permit trapping as a recreational use may require trappers to obtain a refuge special use permit. Signs are posted on refuges where trapping occurs. Contact the refuge manager for specific regulations. Click here for more information on trapping within the National Wildlife Refuge System.