Atchafalaya: River Control Essay

This essay has a total of 688 words and 3 pages.

Atchafalaya: River Control

The Atchafalaya is the most original basins because it has a growing system with very
stable wetlands. It is also the biggest river swamp in North America but has lost about
3,760 acres between 1932 and 1990. The loss of the wetlands is primarily due to erosion,
human activities, and natural conversion. Many human activities, such as oil and gas
pipelines, have interrupted the movement of flow and sediment within the wetlands that it
is another factor in the loss of acres for the Atchafalaya. But there is not a total loss
in this, the Atchafalaya have also positive outlooks on things. The basin consists of more
fish compared to any other natural water system in North America. Let alone the production
and distribution of three types of crawfish found in Atchafalaya. The crawfish is the main
moneymaker for New Orleans fish markets. But the crawfish may only resemble 10-20% of what
is caught. Most of it results in bycatch, organisms caught in the shrimp nets that are
discarded, and the Atchafalaya is seen some times as a floating graveyard of different
expired species.

Unfortunately, natural delta growth has been hampered by dredging activities along the
main navigation channel. Dredge materials have been placed along side the channel, there
by choking off the natural supply of fresh water and sediment to the marsh. TO solve this
problem Atchafalaya sediment projects were designed to restore fresh water and sediment
delivery processes to the Atchafalaya delta. Within 20 years, this is expected to create
an additional 3,000 acres of wetland habitat.

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