HOW YOU CAN HELP
Caddo Lake Institute is proud to work with local communities, organizations and individuals to protect the unique treasure that is Caddo Lake. Scroll down to learn more about the areas where we are making a difference and to pledge your support.
Caddo Lake Institute has directed a collaborative effort to return healthy instream flows to Caddo Lake and its watershed. The project is now a national model, with a historic agreement with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to change the way it operates its dam upstream of Caddo Lake and to raise the level of Lake O’ the Pines to provide additional water to Caddo Lake.
We need $200,000 for the 1-to-1 match required for the science work for the project.
One of the efforts that proved the value of healthy flows is the reintroduction of paddlefish. Paddlefish are North America’s oldest surviving species, but had disappeared from Caddo. The U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service is raising and releasing paddlefish implanted with radio transmitters, and CLI is tracking the fish as part of our education outreach.
We need $35,000 for additional fish, increased monitoring, fuller evaluation of the resulting data and public outreach.
WATER QUALITY & POLLUTION MONITORING
For 20 years, CLI has monitored water quality in Caddo Lake and has assembled one of the best databases on trends in water quality in the state. The information has also helped CLI identify pollution hotspots and work with the responsible parties. CLI’s current goal is to expand the work to focus on nutrients that create toxic algae blooms and that “fertilize” giant salvinia and other aquatic invasive species. We do not have a funder for testing in Louisiana.
We need $25,000 for the expanded nutrient work.
INVASIVE SPECIES MANAGEMENT
CLI has convened local, state and federal agencies through projects in Texas and Louisiana, along with scientists and the community. The easy movement of invasive species on boats and trailers from lake to lake requires more regional outreach. CLI has worked with Texas A&M to prove that biological controls, like salvinia weevils, are a large part of managing giant salvinia. CLI’s goals now are the continued operation of a new community based salvinia weevil rearing facility and the expansion of our outreach and education program.
We need to raise $40,000 to help fund operations of the weevil facility and for outreach and education efforts.
CLI obtained the designation of much of Caddo Lake as a “Wetland of International Importance” under the Ramsar Convention, which is now signed by over 160 countries. We plan to expand the designation beyond the current 25,000 acres and use the designation to help raise public support for protection of the wetlands.
We need $40,000 to begin this expansion.
GENERAL OPERATING FUNDS
Federal funds and funds from many foundations obtained by CLI generally cannot be used to cover the costs of overhead and for the type of work required to plan and design CLI’s projects. Such costs are not included in the projected expenses above.
We need $40,000 per year for such expenses.
CLI is expanding its efforts to help protect publicly and privately owned wetlands in the Caddo Lake watershed. In the early 2000s, CLI convinced the Army to transfer 8000+ acres of land at its Longhorn Army Ammunition Plant to the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service to create the Caddo Lake National Wildlife Refuge to protect significant wetland on the property. CLI has also worked with landowners to restore and protect privately owned wetlands. The expanded effort will focus on these partnerships as well as new opportunities to restore and expand the Caddo Lake Wildlife Management Area (WMA). Restoration of wetland habitat not only protects areas for use by fish and wildlife, it can also provide additional areas for recreation and support the economic foundation of the local communities.
We need $50,000 for the work to expand the Refuge and WMA.