Author: Kevin Rabalais

Knowledge of Place

  At a Glance Location Union Parish Flora Pondberry, Ozark Chinquapin, American alumroot Fauna White-breasted nuthatch, summer tanager, prothonotary warbler   The home Amy and Kelby Ouchley built in Rocky Branch, 14 miles north of West Monroe, contains no…

On The Hunt

Beneath the tall loblolly pines near the Ouiska Chitto Creek in Allen Parish, two dogs hunt to the tune of electronic birdsong. Their orange tracking collars chirp in intervals, first from one dog, then from another, until, briefly, the birdsong…

Preferred Natives

In March 2022, three months into her role as caretaker of Briarwood Nature Preserve in Saline, Bayli Quick turned off Louisiana Hwy 9 to find the tall pines along Caroline Dormon Road ablaze. Rather than turn back, Quick drove…

The Greatest Good

Did You Know? Facts and Figures • There are 154 national forests in the United States, and the U.S. Forest Service manages 193 million acres. • The Calcasieu Ranger District, which includes two non-adjacent “Units” — Vernon and Evangeline…

Atchafalaya Basin

Stepping from The Enterprise (“It boldly goes where no boat should go”), Bryan Piazza and Joseph Baustian enter the dry bed of a nameless bayou. It’s winter in the Atchafalaya Basin, a season of low water and expectation. In…

Strawberry Fields

AT A GLANCE Location Tangipahoa Parish Flora Birdbill spike grass, scarlet oak, little floating heart Fauna+Insects Southeastern blue sucker, Hodges’ clubtail,…

Shared Inheritances

      At a Glance Location Bienville Parish Flora American pinesap, black-fruited spike sedge,…

Gator HUNT

Along the Antill Canal in Terrebonne Parish, 10 miles southeast of Gibson, we drift for 15 minutes before the first sighting. “There,” says Rod Bonvillain Jr., a construction foreman from Houma. He moves toward the bow, finger pointing to…

Natural State: Preserving and Protecting

On either side of the boat stretches the vast wetlands of south Louisiana. Farther south, several miles beyond this ruler-flat landscape, lie Vermilion and West Cote Blanche bays — and beyond,…

Gone Fishin’

Clarence Coco and Paul Daigrepont, hoop net fishermen from Bordelonville, work on the Mississippi River at Pointe Coupee Parish.