Our Programs

Habitat Enhancement Programs

The creation of inshore reefs

Habitat Enhancement Programs

Artificial Reef Program

The creation of inshore reefs provides two main benefits: they assist in reducing coastal erosion and restore hard bottom and essential fish habitats where it had previously existed.

The genesis of this program was to provide the roadmap to a long-term statewide inshore artificial reef plan. To that end, in 2003 the RFRI was awarded a grant from the Shell Marine Habitat Program through the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation. The 11-acre reef Bay Ronquille Habitat Restoration Project was established with this grant ($49,900) and was matched through a fundraising effort ($77,992) totaling $127,892. This pioneering reef was so successful that it has been copied 20 times along Louisiana’s coast since. In fact, in 2014 the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries released the Louisiana Inshore Artificial Reef Plan, and it was this project that started it all!

Bottle to Beaches

This initiative is one of glass repurposing. The goal is to turn glass bottles, which would otherwise be going directly to a landfill, into sand. This sand will in turn be used for benefiting our community in every facet. From community involvement to the protection of the community, this sand has extremely valuable functions. By aiding in flood control, coastal erosion, and disaster relief to giving the community an equitable sense of pride and meaning, the sand created will bring new value out of an old problem. RFRI is proud to announce a new partnership with Lemon Tree Recycling. This partnership will allow our volunteers to participate in coastal restoration and fish habitat enhancement!

Christmas for the Coast

Since 2020 the RFRI has partnered with St Tammany Parish and Baldwin Subaru Motors to collect and repurpose discarded Christmas trees. Disposal of Christmas trees takes up valuable space in landfills and is an annual expense for the Parish. As an alternative to disposal, the Christmas trees have been utilized for coastal restoration and fish habitat.

Christmas trees can be the gift that keeps giving - to anglers and fish alike. Here in St Tammany, the RFRI is overseeing an effort to collect discarded Christmas trees, these trees will be used to build underwater habitat structures in our local waterways. Long after they’ve brightened holiday homes, these trees will provide shelter for fish - and ultimately create better fishing opportunities for anglers. The trees are weighed down and submerged, improving fish habitat for many fish species. Fish will start congregating in and around the structures within a day or two of installation.  Each year RFRI and partners with Liars & Lunkers Bass Club to deploy 1,000s trees collected after the holidays to create many new or enhanced fish habitats around the parish.


All donations are tax deductible.

Would you like to support Us?

Managing the future of fishing in Louisiana is a monumental task and in order for the RFRI to tackle fisheries, habitat, and coastal restoration projects, funding is required. Your contributions will greatly protect, enhance and maintain the Gulf Coast Marine Fishery through science, education and public involvement.