History of the Mississippi River Delta

To understand the solutions available to stop this land loss crisis around the Mississippi River Delta, it’s important to look back at how the delta was created.

For thousands of years, the Mississippi River deposited rich sediment near its mouth in the warm waters of the Gulf of Mexico. Over time, enough sediment stacked up to allow plants to grow, marshes and barrier islands to form and thriving estuaries to launch into production.

The delta’s marshes and fertile waters have provided vital habitat for fresh and saltwater fish, oysters, shrimp and crabs—as well as wintering grounds for millions of waterfowl. For generations, hunters and anglers have enjoyed this special place nicknamed “Sportsman’s Paradise.”

But the outdoor heritage in coastal Louisiana is in jeopardy. The natural process that created this productive delta has been nearly ground to a halt by human activities, laying the groundwork for an ecological collapse. This deterioration of important hunting and fishing habitat poses a severe threat to coastal wetlands that support a multibillion dollar economy every year. 

We need to mimic nature to rebuild the delta’s marshes, wetlands, cypress forests and barrier islands to save this Vanishing Paradise.