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Louisiana IBA Contact

Erik Johnson

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Important Bird Areas - Audubon Louisiana

Louisiana IBAs by Type

IBA Priority Number Acres
Global 12 9,813,841
Continental 1 406,396
State 2 1,431,568
Total 15 11,651,805
For migratory birds, Louisiana is the southern terminus along the Mississippi Flyway, providing important stopover habitat during spring and fall migration, and serves as a critical link between North American breeding grounds and wintering areas in Latin America. In addition, many flocking birds, like ducks and geese, winter in Louisiana. And of course, many specialized birds like Clapper Rails, Reddish Egrets, and Black Skimmers spend their whole lives in coastal wetlands, beaches and islands.

Between 2006 and 2010, the Important Bird Areas Program in Louisiana, led by Louisiana's IBA Coordinator, Melanie Driscoll, identified 23 IBAs across the state of Louisiana, encompassing 17,623,352 acres (27,536 square miles). These IBAs have been evaluated by a technical committee of experts in the birds and habitats of Louisiana, and identify critical breeding, wintering, and stopover habitat for dozens of bird species of conservation concern. Data that support IBA nomination come from a variety of sources, including universities, private researchers, state and federal agencies, and citizen scientists. 

Audubon is focusing its conservation efforts in several of Louisiana's coastal IBAs, including the Chenier Plain IBA, where Audubon's Paul J. Rainey Wildlife Sanctuary protects 26,000 acres of coastal marshes. Additionally, our work to reconnect the Mississippi River to its delta through coastal restoration initiatives is vital for the long-term health of many IBAs. Meanwhile, on-the-ground research and stewardship of beach-nesting birds and Prothonotary Warblers is providing increased breeding success and revealing new insights into the migration of these conservation priority species. With landowners, volunteers, private, state, and federal partners, we also provide outreach and education about habitats and bird populations, conduct research to understand the value of habitats for birds, and lead conservation planning and implementation initiatives.
Updated 14 March 2017
Site Namesort descending Status Priority Counties IBA Criteria
Active Delta (Mississippi River Birdsfoot Delta) Recognized Global Plaquemines
Atchafalaya Basin Recognized State Ascension, Assumption, Avoyelles, Iberia, Iberville, LaFourche, Pointe Coupee, St. Landry, St. Martin, St. Mary, Terrebonne, West Baton Rouge
Atchafalaya Delta Recognized Global Assumption, St. Mary, Terrebonne
Barataria Terrebonne Recognized Global Assumption, Jefferson, LaFourche, Plaquemines, St. Charles, St. James, St. John the Baptist, St. Mary, Terrebonne
Caddo Cross Lakes Potential Caddo
Catahoula-Dewey Wills-Three Rivers Recognized Global Avoyelles, Catahoula, Concordia, La Salle, Pointe Coupee, Rapides, West Feliciana
Chandeleur Islands (Breton National Wildlife Refuge) Recognized Global Plaquemines, St. Bernard
Chenier Plain Recognized Global Calcasieu, Cameron, Iberia, Jefferson Davis, St. Mary, Vermilion
Coastal Prairie Recognized Global Acadia, Allen, Calcasieu, Cameron, Evangeline, Iberia, Jefferson Davis, Lafayette, St. Landry, St. Martin, St. Mary, Vermilion
East Delta Plain Identified State Orleans, Plaquemines, St. Bernard, St. Tammany D4iii
East Kisatchie Recognized Global Grant, La Salle, Natchitoches, Rapides, Red River, Winn
Isles Dernieres-Timbalier Islands Recognized Global Terrebonne
Lake Martin Recognized Global Lafayette, St. Martin
Lake Pontchartrain Recognized Global Jefferson, Orleans, St. Charles, St. John the Baptist, St. Tammany, Tangipahoa
Mississippi River Nominated Concordia, East Carroll, Madison, Morehouse, Tensas, West Carroll
Red River Nominated Bossier, Caddo, Natchitoches, Red River
Toledo Bend Potential De Soto, Sabine, Vernon
Upper Ouachita Nominated Morehouse, Union