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Home > Current News > 2004

News: 2004

New Artificial Reef in Lake Pontchartrain
Posted: 1/30/04

A new artificial reef was recently established in Lake Pontchartrain through a partnership of the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries and the Lake Pontchartrain Basin Foundation. “These should promote fishing opportunities in the lake,” said Mark Schexnayder, Louisiana Sea Grant Fisheries Extension Agent in the LSU Agricultural Center, who serves the project in an advisory capacity.

Eighty 1,400-pound concrete balls were placed into the lake about five miles south of Mandeville on January 14. The dome-shaped, hollow cement structures with large holes allow water to flow through them, creating an underwater habitat for algae and plankton — food for many recreational species. This fifth artificial reef in Lake Pontchartrain is built on an abandoned exploratory oil and gas drilling location. Earlier, three similar reefs were established next to shell pads that used to support oil and gas drilling barges.

The first artificial reef in Lake Pontchartrain was constructed in 2001 with mounds of crushed limestone rubble spread over a two-acre area in Orleans Parish about 1.25 miles east of the Lakefront Airport runway. In it, fish feeding is promoted by disruptions in the bottom current caused by the varied relief of the mounds. All five reefs are marked with yellow buoys.

The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries is monitoring the reefs to study their effectiveness.

Click here for a map and more information about all five artificial reefs.

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