The Land Trust for Louisiana is celebrating its latest project just in time for Earth Day! We now hold a conservation servitude on the ~1400-acre Waldheim Mitigation Bank in St. Tammany Parish.
The bank sponsor will restore nearly 800 acres of wet longleaf pine savanna habitats – one of the most threatened in North America. A savanna is a grassland with few scattered trees and shrubs and is similar to prairie or meadow. Many species occurring with longleaf pine occur nowhere else and are globally or regionally rare. The pine savannas in southeast Louisiana support more state-rare plant species than any other habitat in Louisiana!
The site also contains almost 200 acres of bayhead swamp habitat along the beautiful small streams that traverse the property. The site contains an important segment of the upper reaches of Abita Creek and its tributaries, which form a significant portion of the headwaters of the Abita River, a Louisiana-designated Natural and Scenic Stream. Abita Creek also flows through another LTL project site – the Abita Creek Flatwoods Preserve, owned by The Nature Conservancy. Both sites are part of the larger Money Hill Conservation Area where approximately 13,000 acres are currently conserved in wetland mitigation banks.
The Waldheim Mitigation Bank will contribute many watershed benefits in the region including improved water quality, improved habitat for numerous wildlife species, storm-water storage and ground water recharge, reducing flooding downstream.What is a Mitigation Bank?