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University » Public Lands » Upper Ouachita NWR
Upper Ouachita NWR

national-wildlife-refuge-logoRefuge Facts:
Established: 1978.
Acres: 40,000+ purchased with Duck Stamp funds. Located in Union and Morehouse parishes.
Location: The refuge is managed from the Louisiana Refuge Complex office located 6 miles north of West Monroe on LA Highway 143.

Natural History:
Eighteen miles long and up to ten miles wide, the refuge consists of over 14,500 acres of bottomland hardwood forest, 5,000 acres of upland forest, 3,000 acres of shrub/wooded swamp, 16,000 acres of reforested farmland, and 2,000 acres of open water. About 80% of the refuge is subject to annual flooding from December through May. The central physical feature is the Ouachita (pronounced washataw) River, which bisects the refuge. The river’s wide floodplain is characterized by alluvial soils. Refuge supports concentrations of ducks, geese, wading birds, raptors and a small wintering population of bald eagles.

Financial Impact:
Administered under the North Louisiana Refuges Complex (which includes D’Arbonne NWR) with a FY 05 operating budget of $1,435,000. Visitation exceeds 23,000 annually.

Refuge Objectives:
Provide habitat for a diversity of migratory birds and resident wildlife species.
Provide habitat and protection for endangered species.
Provide opportunities for wildlife-oriented recreation, environmental education and interpretation.

Management Tools
Forest management.
Law enforcement.
Public hunting and fishing.

Public Use Opportunities:
Foot trails, wildlife observation, scenic vistas (land and water), hunting, fishing, photography, group tours

News Breakers
Reconnecting the Ouachita to its Floodplain 07/15/2009
This summer, the USFWS and The Nature Conservancy in Louisiana plan to breach a 17-mile levee that surrounds 25 square miles at the Upper Ouachita River NWR in northeast Louisiana. >> read more

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