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  • Vanishing Paradise : Reconnect The Mississippi River With Its Delta
    read more Register for Conservation on Tap April 20th Register today for our popular Conservation on Tap on Wednesday April 20th in Baton Rouge or Lafayette Louisiana Vanishing Paradise read more Florida Bay A Vision of Paradise in Decline Florida Bay American anglers have never had to travel to the Bahamas Panama or Belize to experience the thrill read more Vanishing Paradise was launched in 2009 by Ducks Unlimited and

    Original URL path: http://vanishingparadise.org/ (2016-04-30)
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  • Vanishing Paradise : Restoration Priorities
    quality has declined its oyster reefs have been lost its barrier islands eroded and its seagrass beds destroyed These changes have reduced populations of many species of fish and waterfowl The 2010 Deepwater Horizon oilspill was another hit to these vulnerable ecosystems If the wild spaces of the Gulf Coast aren t protected and restored the region will lose its rich hunting and angling heritage Funding from the Deepwater disaster provides a long awaited opportunity to address comprehensive habitat restoration It gives us the chance to restore the region rebuild its wetlands like the Mississippi River Delta and protect water quality using a comprehensive science based plan America s sportsmen and women need to speak up to make sure these funds are spent wisely and used to improve fish and waterfowl habitats Learn more about restoration priorities for each Gulf state Alabama Gulf Coast Coastal Louisiana Mississippi River Delta Florida s Gulf Coast Mississippi Gulf Coast Texas Gulf Coast Related Resources Why Estuaries Matter to Sportsmen National Sportsman s Group Urges Gulf Restoration Council to Prioritize Ecosystem Projects Ducks Unlimited Urges Obama Administration to Speed Up Restoration Plans Restoration Priorities Alabama Florida Louisiana Mississippi Texas How To Help Search Join

    Original URL path: http://vanishingparadise.org/restorethegulf/ (2016-04-30)
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  • Vanishing Paradise : Alabama Gulf Coast
    protect and promote the ecologic and economic health of the Alabama Coast View the full explanation of these projects in NWF s latest report 100 1000 Restore Coastal Alabama Mobile Bay has experienced significant loss of oyster reefs coastal marsh and seagrass beds However the Bay has enormous potential for comprehensive ecological restoration including replacement and enhancement of these lost habitats due to the size of the estuary historical distribution of oysters in the bay high natural oyster recruitment potential and warm water for fast growth This project proposes to build 100 miles of intertidal oyster reefs and promote the growth of more than 1 000 miles of coastal marsh and seagrass beds D Olive Creek Watershed Restoration The D Olive Watershed is located within the Mobile Bay National Estuary Program and provides critical nursery habitat for fish and wildlife Surrounding development has degraded nearly 12 miles of streams in the watershed The project involves restoring watershed hydrology through stormwater management measures Grand Bay National Wildlife Refuge Land Acquisition The Grand Bay National Wildlife Refuge which lies along the Mississippi Alabama border was established to protect one of the largest expanses of undisturbed pine savanna habitats in the Gulf Coastal Plain region Refuge marshes provide wintering habitat to waterfowl and support recreationally and commercially important fish species The project involves protecting and restoring important habitat Bon Secour National Wildlife Refuge Land Acquisition Bon Secour National Wildlife Refuge provides important habitat for several endangered or threatened species of wildlife and plants as well as migrating birds sea turtles and other flora and fauna The project would add 488 acres of ecologically valuable coastal lands to the Refuge Dauphin Island Parkway Salt Marsh Finfish and Shellfish Habitat Restoration Dauphin Island Parkway links Dauphin Island and mainland Alabama Wave action other erosive forces

    Original URL path: http://vanishingparadise.org/alabama/ (2016-04-30)
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  • Vanishing Paradise : Discover Sportsman's Paradise In Louisiana
    cover the coast of Louisiana and include cypress forests and barrier islands that were formed over thousands of years by the shifting course of the Mississippi River and its annual floods These rich and productive coastal waters and marshes have earned Louisiana its nickname of Sportsman s Paradise The Mississippi River Delta is critical to the food web throughout the Gulf of Mexico Its fertile waters have a wide variety of salinities that provide vital habitat for oysters shrimp crabs and many species of fish For example juvenile shrimp and blue crabs seek protection in brackish coastal marshes until they grow older and are ready to move out to the open Gulf Commercial and recreational fishing is big business in Louisiana generating more than 3 billion in economic impact every year In some places in the state it is possible to set out from one dock and catch everything from largemouth bass to yellowfin tuna Even if you ve never been fishing around the delta you ve probably enjoyed the region s seafood given that a significant portion of America s domestic shrimp blue crabs and oysters all come from the Mississippi River Delta For North America s ducks and geese the wetlands of the Mississippi River Delta are vital Every winter the delta hosts around seventy percent of the ducks and geese that use the Central and Mississippi flyways as many as 10 million waterfowl in a given year As the delta disappears it is losing the habitats that support these hunting and fishing opportunities Take Action Learn how you can help restore the Mississippi River Delta Related Info Bijou Blowout Fall Fishing in the West Bay Diversion Lake Pontchartrain s Best Kept Secret Download Vanishing Paradise Campaign Brochure Discover the Delta How the Delta Was Formed What Went

    Original URL path: http://vanishingparadise.org/discover-the-delta/ (2016-04-30)
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  • Vanishing Paradise : Florida's Gulf Coast
    ecosystem restoration benefits Florida sportsmen AND the economy Priority Projects for Florida Habitat restoration projects should emphasize Restore estuaries Better manage water flows Address stormwater and sedimentation Improve water quality The environmental restoration projects identified below prioritize these challenges to restore protect and promote the ecologic and economic health of the Florida Coast View the full explanation of these projects in NWF s latest report C 43 West Basin Storage Reservoir Project The Comprehensive Everglades Restoration Plan approved by Congress in 2002 calls for a reservoir adjacent to the Caloosahatchee River Under current practice the Caloosahatchee estuary suffers as fresh water is held back to meet water supply needs during times of drought The project is critical to restoring the estuaries of southwest Florida including Charlotte Harbor National Estuary an important contributor to the sustainability of Gulf of Mexico fisheries Robinson Preserve Restoration Phase II Manatee County The 637 acre conservation area is position at the junction of two estuaries of national significance Tampa Bay and Sarasota Bay In recent years nearly 487 acres were transformed from disturbed farmland to high quality coastal habitats The next phases would add 150 acres and restore the land to a more natural state opening it to the public for passive recreation Apalachicola River and Bay Restoration Plan The Apalachicola River and Bay system is an area of exceptional ecological importance The river supports most diverse assemblage of freshwater fish in Florida The bay supports a wide variety of recreationally and commercially important fish species and also 90 percent of Florida s oyster fisheries Despites is value the habitat has been severely degraded over time Pensacola Bay Living Shorelines and Oyster Reef Restoration The project will create eight miles of living shorelines in the East Bay area of Pensacola Bay Living shoreline projects apply natural principles and construction elements that create habitat and provide other services important to the function of estuaries including habitat for economically important fishes It will also include the development of oyster reef habitat providing nursery habitat for finfish and shellfish St Marks National Wildlife Refuge The refuge spans more than 43 miles of coastline and supports Gulf sturgeon and Gulf striped bass in addition to other fish and wildlife The project will provide habitat conservation and enhanced water quality St Andrew Bay West Bay Preservation Area St Andrew Bay is one of the most diverse estuaries in North American supporting more than 3 600 species in its watershed It includes federally designated critical habitat for the Gulf sturgeon The project restore additional 4 494 acres that will greatly contribute to long term health and resiliency of the area s diverse fish and wildlife Suwanee River Caber Coastal Connector Florida has the longest protected natural coastline in the continental U S but a critical missing link is the Caber track Conservation of the Caber Coastal Connector will establish an almost unbroken chain of coastal conversation lands from Gulf County to Hernando County It will help maintain the quality and quantity

    Original URL path: http://vanishingparadise.org/florida/ (2016-04-30)
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  • Vanishing Paradise : Mississippi Gulf Coast
    projects in NWF s latest report Gulf Islands National Seashore Acquisition Spreading 160 miles from Cat Island in Mississippi to the eastern tip of Santa Rosa Island in Florida the Seashore includes Horn and Petit Bois Islands both federally designated wilderness areas The barrier islands are experiencing accelerated erosion and degradation especially in the wake of recent hurricanes Without action continued erosion of the barrier islands will increase the salinity of Mississippi Sound and compromise ecosystem integrity Habitat protection projects on the islands and within the mainland marsh area of the Seashore will help protect the health of Mississippi Sound Bay St Louis and Biloxi Bay Oyster Reef Restoration Historically oyster reefs have played an important role in maintaining the ecological integrity of near shore waters They provide important habitat for fish and other aquatic species improve water quality through filtration supporting marsh creation by trapping sediment and dampen waves from storms Bays and estuaries along the Mississippi Coast once supported a thriving oyster industry but overfishing habitat alteration and declining water quality have reduced natural oyster reef habitats by over 90 This project will construct up to 600 acres of sub tidal oyster reefs in Bay St Louis and Biloxi Bay areas that have historically supported oyster reefs and where previous restoration efforts have been successful Pascagoula River Marsh Restoration The Pascagoula River system is one of the last unimpeded major river systems in the continental United States This watershed supplies a large portion of freshwater entering the Mississippi Sound supporting the health and diversity of low lying flatlands forested wetlands and highly productive marshlands These marshes are threatened by a rapid expansion of non native invasive species primarily caused by disturbances in river hydrology which leads to loss of native trees and marsh plants This project aims to restore 11 150 acres of marsh habitat near the mouth of the Pascagoula River as well as invasive species control Grand Bay Acquisition Restoration The Grand Bay National Wildlife Refuge on the Mississippi and Alabama border was established to protect one of the largest expanses of undisturbed pine savanna habitats in the Gulf Coastal Plain region In addition to birds the marshes are extremely important to many recreational and commercial fish species including speckled trout red drum and flounder The project would further the existing refuge area and restore key coastal habitats Turkey Creek Ecosystem Restoration The Turkey Creek Watershed is located near Gulfport and includes approximately 11 000 acres of forests wetlands agricultural areas and urban development Turkey Creek flows approximately 13 miles from its headwaters to its confluence with Bernard Bayou an important estuary within Biloxi Bay The project will restore critical hydrology and use techniques such as controlled burns to maintain the health of the wet pine savannah Living Shorelines Wetlands Restoration Projects MS Gulf Coast Loss of historic coastal marsh due to shoreline erosion continues to be a major problem across the entire Gulf Coast and in Mississippi estuarine marshes are considered to be imperiled These

    Original URL path: http://vanishingparadise.org/mississippi/ (2016-04-30)
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  • Vanishing Paradise : Texas Gulf Coast
    flowing into the estuary due to human alternation are radically changing the system and now deemed ecologically unsound San Antonio Bay Freshwater Inflows The San Antonio Bay estuary system provides an abundance of important habitat for fish and wildlife as well as excellent recreational opportunities The estuary depends heavily on freshwater flowing from the Guadalupe and San Antonio rivers Matagorda Bay Estuary System The Matagorda Bay estuary system is located on the central Texas coast and provides important habitat for a wide variety of fish and wildlife Freshwater from the Colorado River This project involves purchasing an ongoing right to have water delivered to the estuary from new storage facilities that are planned for imminent development Freshwater from Tributary Streams By limiting water withdrawals on one or more streams that reach the bay at a key location this project will help moderate salinity levels during dry periods to provide a refuge area Galveston Bay Freshwater Inflows Galveston Bay is the largest and most biologically productive estuary in Texas It provides abundant fish and wildlife habitats with diverse recreational opportunities for a population of about 4 5 million people in surrounding counties Salt Bayou Siphons The Salt Bayou system comprises approximately 139 000 acres and contains the largest contiguous estuarine marsh complex in Texas The Salt Bayou encompasses freshwater and estuarine marsh coastal prairie tidal flats and freshwater creeks The habitat is beneficial such as speckled trout redfish Southern flounder shrimp and blue crabs However it has been significantly damaged by a long history of land development including the construction of a rail line and the dredging of the Gulf Intracoastal Water Way Paso Corvinas Wetlands at the Bahia Grande The Bahia Grande once served as an important nursery for a wide variety of fish and shellfish as well as important

    Original URL path: http://vanishingparadise.org/texas/ (2016-04-30)
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  • Vanishing Paradise : How You Can Help
    and fishing traditions Send a letter to the Gulf Coast Ecosystem Restoration Council to invest in comprehensive habitat restoration of fish and waterfowl habitats across the Gulf For Businesses and Sportsmen Clubs Sportsmen businesses and organizations can take a leading role in restoring the Gulf by urging decision makers to focus on targeted well planned projects If you are a business owner President or Board Chair please consider adding your business or organization to the letter s below Letter to Congress to Restore the Everglades The Everglades is at a tipping point It is unimaginable that we could lose these wondrous fisheries Please sign on your business or sportsmen organization to the letter asking Congress to take action to restore the Everglades Previous Letters Sportsmen Letter to Louisiana Governor John Bel Edwards 2016 Sportsmen Letter to Texas Governor to Restore the Texas Coast 2014 Sportsmen Letter for Comprehensive Restoration Plan for the Gulf Coast pdf 2013 Sportsmen Letter to Congress to Restore the Mississippi River Delta If you would like to learn additional ways for your business or organization can help please contact Andy McDaniels Help us share the story of this important conservation issue Find us on Facebook or

    Original URL path: http://vanishingparadise.org/take-action/ (2016-04-30)
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