Maintenance dredging of the sediment trap at Dog Leg Canal located within the Attakapas Island Wildlife Management Area in St. Mary Parish has started, according to the state Department of Natural Resources.
DNR Secretary Stephen Chustz said the work area is about two miles north of Millet (Myette) Point on the east bank of the Atchafalaya River. “Working with the Technical Advisory Group, this project was identified as one that would improve the natural resources of the basin in an area enjoyed by so many people.” Chustz said.
The project is expected to take about three to four weeks to complete, a DNR news release stated.
Funding for the water management and dredging project is through DNR’s Atchafalaya Basin Program at an estimated total cost of $220,523.
The project will restore the existing sediment trap’s functionality at the cut and allow the transport of freshwater from the Atchafalaya River into the swamp.
The project was approved by the Atchafalaya Basin Technical Advisory Group, which is required to certify that any water quality and water management project nominated would result in water management or water quality improvements that will enhance the wildlife, fisheries, or forest resources of the Atchafalaya Basin.
Gerald Alexander, chairman of the Atchafalaya Research and Promotion Board, said, “The construction of this project is a great start toward improving the water conditions off the east bank of the river in the area near Grand Lake.”
St. Mary Parish President Paul Naquin said, “We have worked closely with the Atchafalaya Basin Program and Technical Advisory Group to identify water projects that will be beneficial. I am glad to see our plans move ahead, sometimes even with limited resources, we can do a great deal of good.”
The Department of Wildlife and Fisheries manages the Attakapas Wildlife Management Area, which is comprised of some 27,962 acres.