Red River National Wildlife Refuge are new land managers of Bickham Dickson Park in Shreveport
In partnership with the City of Shreveport the federal government has taken over operation and management of C. Bickham Dickson Park (Park), which now becomes part of the Red River National Wildlife Refuge (NWR). In 2019 the Shreveport City Council agreed to a 99-year lease of the Park to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.
“It will be great to get C. Bickham Dickson Park open again and accessible to the public,” said Mayor Adrian Perkins. “This collaboration is a great way to ensure the conservation of this park for many years to come.”
The Park has been closed off and on since 2014 mainly due to flooding. Discussion began in 2015 between the City of Shreveport (City) Mayor’s office, the Director of Shreveport Public Assembly and Parks (SPAR), and The Nature Conservancy of LA (TNC) about the future of the Park. TNC recommended the NWR as a possible win-win alternative for managing the Park.
The purpose of the National Wildlife Refuge System is conserving America’s lands and waters including the fish, wildlife and plants for the benefit of future generations of the American people. Refuge Manager, Pat Stinson said “We will open the Park, renamed the C.B. Dickson Unit, to fishing, boating with trolling motors only, canoeing, kayaking, hiking, bird watching, nature photography, and nature study, while camping and hunting will not be allowed.”
TNC is pleased to have been a part of building the partnership. Keith Ouchley, state director for TNC said, “This is what I love about working for TNC – finding solutions that make sense for the economy, the environment and the public. It’s a great outcome for the City, the NWR, the public and the natural resources.”
This week, the refuge manager will open the first parking lot. The second gate will remained closed as it will take a while to do all the clean-up such as removing debris, tackling invasive plants and installing signage. The Nature Conservancy, City ofShreveport, and State of Louisiana Department of Culture and Tourism are working with the Refuge on a grand opening event tentatively set for spring 2021.
The Headquarters Unit and Visitor Center of Red River National Wildlife Refuge is located along the Arthur Teague Parkway south of the Jimmie Davis/70th Street Bridge at 150 Eagle Bend Point, Bossier City, Louisiana 71112. Due to COVID-19, the visitor center is still closed but the refuge property and hiking trails are open. For additional information about Red River National Wildlife Refuge call 318-742-1219, view our website at http://www.fws.gov/refuge/red_river/ or visit our facebook at https://www.facebook.com/RedRiverNWR.
Pat Stinson, Red River National Wildlife Refuge firstname.lastname@example.org, 318-742-1219
Africa Price, City of Shreveport email@example.com, 318-716-8794
Lisa Creasman, The Nature Conservancy firstname.lastname@example.org, 919-606-4107
The mission of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is working with others to conserve, protect, and enhance fish, wildlife, plants, and their habitats for the continuing benefit of the American people. For more information on our work and the people who can make it happen, visit fws.gov. Connect with the Service on Facebook, follow our tweets, watch the YouTube Channel and download photos from Flickr.