Protect and Restore.
Woodlands Conservancy protects and restores forested wetlands that serve as a natural sponge to absorb stormwater and provide a wind buffer to protect the surrounding community during storm events. They own the 190 acre Delacroix Preserve in Orleans Parish and manage 650 acres in Plaquemines Parish known as Woodlands Trail. Woodlands Conservancy has conducted restoration work on over 500 acres of these two properties to remove non-native, invasive species and reforest with over 14,000 native trees.
They were founded in 2001 to promote smart growth and preserve low-lying forested wetlands for habitat for wildlife, storm protection and the provision of a unique wilderness recreation opportunity. In 2015, the Plaquemines Parish Council supported selling a portion of the 650 acre Woodlands Trail property for the development of 25+ baseball fields for traveling teams. Woodlands Conservancy successfully rallied their supporters and have since obtained the Plaquemines Parish Government's support by the passing of a resolution to support selling the entire acreage to the organization.
Hundreds of millions of birds cross the gulf each year and travel along the Mississippi Flyway with 2.5 million stopping daily in Louisiana to feed and rest. Woodlands Conservancy’s managed properties provide habitat for several species of Conservation Concern per Louisiana’s comprehensive wildlife conservation strategy, the Wildlife Action Plan, and several species of Continental Importance according to Partners in Flight. USFWS reports that with the continuing loss of our wetlands in combination with relative sea level rise, the Woodlands Conservancy lands will be one of the largest forested land masses between open water and the city of New Orleans within the next 35-50 years. The value of this habitat for migratory birds makes it imperative that we preserve, restore and enhance the habitat within our few remaining coastal forests and educate our children of their value in order to foster their development as environmental stewards of the lands their children will inherit.
Raising $1000 could help acquire GPS units to utilize with students who are participating in restoration activities as part of their service learning programs. Raising $2,000 would help off-set expenses in expanding their Seeds to Saplings program to Orleans Parish Schools. Raising $5,000 would provide funding to work with 2 classrooms during the 2017-2018 school year. They hope to improve the 10 miles of trails on the Plaquemines Parish site, install bathroom facilities and an interpretive center to allow them to expand educational opportunities to teach others of the function and value of forested wetlands.