March 14, 2020 Grand Isle, La.
The Nature Conservancy of Louisiana has preserved several small tracts of forest totaling about 41 acres on Grand Isle and has worked with local companies and residents to encourage restoration of former forests and promote environmental education through planting trees with school programs.
Grand Isle has long been recognized as one of the most important stopover sites for neotropical migratory birds flying across the Gulf of Mexico on their annual migration to and from North America. The trees on Grand Isle are often their first resting stop before or after making the five hundred mile flight across the Gulf.
Bryan and Melanie Benigno took these pictures of irises blooming at the Nature Conservancy's Grilletta Track in Grand Isle, La. The Grilletta track is just one of a number of parcels that comprise the Nature Conservancy's Lafitte Woods group of properties
that have some of the last native live oak forests that were once prevalent on the island back in history. These forests are extremely important as a resting stop for birds migrating north in the spring because the island is the first land they come to after their long journey flying across the Gulf of Mexico.
The number of birding people that come to Grand Isle during their annual bird migration celebration during the month of April is beginning to outnumber the number of people that come for their world famous Tarpon Rodeo. Many of the visitors end up walking the trails in the Nature Conservancy's properties.
There is a walking trail on the property that goes through a freshwater bog, which is above sea level and not affected by the tide. Bryan and Melanie like to hike the trail and they do so often. They ran across these blooming Louisiana irises which is the I. giganticaerulea species of iris.
Photos: Louisiana irises blooming on The Nature Conservancy's Grilletta Track in Grand Isle, La. on Saturday, March 14, 2020.
More information on The Nature Conservancy's Grand Isle properties can be found here: