Bayou Teche National Wildlife Refuge, established in 2001, is located in St. Mary Parish in southeast Louisiana. The 9,028 acre refuge is composed of cypress-tupelo swamp and wet bottomland hardwoods laced with bayous and canals. The primary mission of the refuge is to preserve and manage habitat for the threatened Louisiana black bear. Other objectives are to provide habitat for other fish and wildlife species, environmental education, and opportunities for public recreation.
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The refuge provides important habitat for the Louisiana black bear, a federally threatened subspecies of the American black bear. It also provides excellent habitat for wading birds, neotropical songbirds, waterfowl, and reptiles and amphibians. The refuge is open year round to the public from sunrise to sunset, with seasonal restrictions in some areas. The refuge can be accessed by vehicle, foot, or boat. Wildlife observation, boating and fishing are allowed on the refuge year round except in areas closed to public access. Hunting is permitted on the refuge in specific areas and under date, time, and lottery restrictions.
Recreation & Education Opportunities
The refuge is open for visitation from sunrise to sunset. Normal office hours are 7 am to 4 pm, however, the Franklin field office may be closed while refuge personnel are working elsewhere. Visitors are encouraged to call ahead if they need assistance.
- Environmental Education
- Wildlife Observation
There are no entrance or use fees.
Bayou Teche National Wildlife Refuge is one of the newest refuges in the system. Management activities are few and staff is shared from the nearby Mandalay NWR. Personnel are working to manage recreation, provide outreach to the local community, and monitor Lousiana black bear and other wildliife populations.
Bayou Teche National Wildlife Refuge
Southeast Louisiana Wildlife Refuges
61389 Hwy. 434
Lacombe, LA 70445
Services provided in:
- Saint Mary Parish, Louisiana