Our tour guide was Greg and he was quite the local character.
|One of the birthday twins getting ready to tour.|
|Our boat. The red things are noise protection ear muffs. The engine is LOUD!|
|Hymenocallis festalis - Peruvian Lily|
Bayou means "small stream" in a local Native American language. It's basically a stream moving through a swamp.
There are lots of specialized plants that do well in the bayou, like cattails, bulrush, waterlilies and cedars. There are a myriad of animals that live there as well, like crayfish, catfish, nutria, snakes, frogs, toads, alligators, herons, turtles, etc.
|Iris and Hymenocallis festalis|
|Spanish moss and a gorgeous view.|
|A nursery log.|
In addition to being a natural habitat for many plants and animals, the bayou protects inland areas from coastal erosion caused by hurricanes and storm surge. As these areas disappear, so does their protection. The coastline of Louisiana is shrinking because of this.
I'm afraid I'm not completely sure the area we covered by airboat, but it was a mix of the Dufrene Ponds, Bayou des Allemands, and a little of the Petit Lac des Allemands.
The great thing about an airboat is that it can go almost anywhere. They are very shallow boats that use a fan to propel it over the water. We traveled though open canals, up and over dry embankments and through all manner of mud and "flottant", which are masses of floating vegetation. It looks like you could step out on it, but it's really not land.
|A floating island.|
|Greg playing with "Big Al"|
|A 1-2 year old alligator|
|Baby alligators are so cute!|
Be sure to stop at the Roadside Daiquiri a few doors down (Hwy 90 and Catfish Lane) for a frosty tasty frozen beverage to celebrate not being eaten by an alligator. I suggest the Amaretto & Pineapple!
You'll know you're there by the big blue gorilla out front.
|Lots of nasty Salvinia natans (Floating Fern)|
|A marshy area.|
|Not sure what was going on here - but it looked funny!|