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Birding in Louisiana

Located in the heart of Louisiana, the Atchafalaya National Heritage Area borders or overlaps most parts of the State of Louisiana. Our goal of increasing awareness of the natural resources within the Atchafalaya National Heritage Area led to a partnership with the American Birding Association to produce a statewide birding guide as part of the ABA's Birdfinding Guide series. The volume gives directions to over 100 areas for birding throughout the state, includes maps, Louisiana specialties, and contains beautiful photography and checklists of Louisiana birds and other wildlife.


Introducing the eBird Trail Tracker:

Thanks to The Cornell Lab of Ornithology, visitors to the Atchafalaya National Heritage Area now have the ability to document their bird sightings throughout our region. This application displays bird observations uploaded to eBird by bird watchers, so that those interested in birding can see where the action is happening by clicking the eBird Trail Tracker link below. To learn more about how to become a part of our eBird tracker community and submit your own bird sightings, visit the eBird website!


Birding in Atchafalaya National Heritage Area

The Atchafalaya Basin is a vital part of the ecosystem on which the area’s wildlife has come to depend. With landscapes ranging from coastal wetlands to rolling hills and prairies, Louisiana offers a variety of habitats including fresh and saltwater marshes, cheniers, upland pines, cypress-tupelo swamps, bottomland hardwood forests and open meadows. Enjoy some of the best birding in the country at these areas in the Atchafalaya National Heritage Area.

The Atchafalaya is home to almost 400 bird species including waders like herons, egrets, ibises and spoonbills. Forming part of the Mississippi Flyway, the area is a major wintering ground for ducks and geese, and eagles are often spotted. Not unusual in the warmer months are sightings of swallow tailed kite, Swainson’s warbler and Bachman’s sparrow.

Local information: Lake Martin/Cypress Island Preserve is a large wading-bird rookery. Jefferson Island/Rip Van Winkle Gardens is a smaller wading-bird rookery with lots of spoonbills. Whiskey Bay Road is great for local breeders like Prothonotary, Swainson's Warbler and Painted Bunting. Also, as you travel around the Lafayette area, be sure to watch for Whooping Cranes!


Birding Organizations

Audubon Society
P O Box 67016, Baton Rouge, LA 70896
Eric Liffman, President - 225.766.8775
Field Trips: Jeff Harris - 225-571-3895

Kids Who Bird (sponsored by the Baton Rouge Audubon Society)
c/o Jane Patterson, BRAS Education Chairwoman - 225-753-7615

Terrebonne Bird Club
Paul Schaub, President - 985.519.0009
Kathy Rhodes, Vice President - 985.872.9591

Louisiana Birders Anonymous
c/o Judith O'Neale
Linda Stewart Knight, President
Judith O'Neale, Treasurer

Other Birding Resources



Atchafalaya National Heritage Area

• National Park Service affiliate
• "Passport to Your National Parks" Program
• Member of Alliance of National Heritage Areas
National Park Service Affiliate Louisiana Travel - Pick Your Passion Alliance of National Heritage Areas