The Manchac Greenway in the transportation corridor up the middle of the swampy Isthmus of Manchac is an entirely artificial construct and is much different from the natural wetlands found on either side. The lush growing environment of South Louisiana allows the vegetation that has become rooted on this raised mound of dirt be more varied and abundant than what grows in the more demanding and highly evolved inundated wetlands on either side.

This 26 mi. long mound laid in the 1920s includes sturdy Live Oaks and Magnolias on the shoulders of the old Hammond Hwy. On the other side of the road, trees like Hackberry, Elm and Chinese Tallow have grown from the mud of the Interstate-55 Canal spoil bank dug in the 1970s. All these trees have knitted together or competed against one another for dominance in the intervening years. Some have suffered misfortunes from bad weather, road maintenance and fire. 

Shrubs, grasses, vines, reeds and a multitude of other plants have filled in all available places in the sun. Travelers on the Greenway might notice how some of the annuals on the side of the road compete to dominate in their part of the growing season. Aquatic plants crowding the adjacent waterways also try to out-muscle each other to the point of obnoxiousness. And as always, the swamp and marshes occupying the background beyond the roadway silently standby as they have for centuries.

The SLU Turtle Cove Self-Guided Boardwalk Tour of Plants and Animals​​


Located at Pass Manchac

Click to view PDF files of the different signs located on our Self-Guided Boardwalk Tour. These are provided for educators to aid in the planning and developing of activities prior to a scheduled field trip: scavenger hunts, species identification exercises, etc.  You are also invited to SPONSOR one of our boardwalk signs — click here for Boardwalk Sign Sponsorship Information.


 If you would like to sponsor a sign, find out which signs are available, and what language you would like to place on the sponsorship plate, contact Turtle Cove Manager Dr. Robert Moreau via email (, office phone (985-549-5008) or cell phone (504-231-1067).


Visitor’s Guide: 2-page PDF (Turtle Cove provides a copy for each visitor upon arrival)

Boardwalk Stations and Sign Sponsorship Information

  1. Double-crested Cormorant   United Country Real Estate/Sharp Outdoors – Judy C. and Michael R. Sharp, SPringfield, LA. (Wetland Patron Level from 2014 Fundraiser)

  2. Gulf Menhaden & Bay AnchovyDr. John & Mrs. Georgianne Poteet (Wetland Patron Level from 2014 Fundraiser)

  3. Blue CrabKenneth and Brenda Digby (Swamp Supporter Level from 2014 Fundraiser)

  4. Blue & Channel Catfish   Middendorf’s (Wetland Patron Level from 2014 Fundraiser)

  5. Red-shouldered Hawk   Manchac Hunting Club – Rick Durham and Gary Gamble (Wetland Patron Level from 2014 Fundraiser)

  6. Bald Eagle   ENTERGY (“Tidal” Sponsor Level from 2014 Fundraiser)

  7. Brown Pelican   ENTERGY (“Tidal” Sponsor Level from 2014 Fundraiser)

  8. Rangia Clam   Lake Pontchartrain Basin Foundation (Golden Gator Level from 2014 Fundraiser)

  9. Laughing Gull   All Coast, LLC (Wetland Patron Level from 2014 Fundraiser)

  10. Brown & White Shrimp   Dr. Claude and Mrs. Judy Nesser (Wetland Patron Level from 2014 Fundraiser)

  11. Chinese Tallow   Judge Donald Fendlason (Swamp Supporter Level from 2014 Fundraiser)

  12. Seaside Goldenrod   Paris Parker/Aveda Salons and Spas (Swamp Supporter Level from 2014 Fundraiser)

  13. Baldcypress   ATS – American Truck Showrooms (Wetland Patron Level from 2014 Fundraiser)

  14. Lubber Grasshopper   Dean and Sharon Ribando (Swamp Supporter from 2014 Fundraiser)

  15. Common Reed (Roseaucane)   ELOS Environmental – a wetland services company (Swamp Supporter Level from 2014 Fundraiser)

  16. Dwarf Palmetto

  17. Canary grass

  18. Blue Flag & Louisiana Iris   Jim and Beth Wee (Swamp Supporter from 2014 Fundraiser)

  19. Spider Lily   Sign DeSigns & More (Golden Gator Supporter from 2014 Fundraiser)

  20. Deer Pea  

  21. Bulltongue

  22. Eastern Baccharis & Marsh elder

  23. Alligator weed

  24. Southern & Diamond-backed Watersnake   ATS – American Truck Showrooms (Wetland Patron Level from 2014 Fundraiser)

  25. Virginia saltmarsh mallow

  26. Butterflies

  27. White-tailed Deer   Manchac Hunting Club – Wayne Hagan and Chris Wall (Wetland Patron Level from 2014 Fundraiser)

  28. Great Blue Heron   Robert Moreau and Family (Swamp Supporter from 2014 Fundraiser)

  29. Pigweed

  30. Red-winged Blackbird

  31. Osprey   ENTERGY (“Tidal” Sponsor Level from 2014 Fundraiser)

  32. Southern Cattail

  33. American White Ibis   Nick and Betty Norton (2015-2016)

  34. Great Egret   Saving Wild Places…Mary Ann Sternberg and Family (2015-2016)

  35. River Otter

  36. Snowy Egret   In Honor of Caroline Dorman (Mark Davis and Family, 2014-2020)

  37. Leafy 3-square & 3-cornered grass

  38. Cypress Logging Ditches in Manchac   Cameron and Marcia Barr (Wetland Patron Level from 2014 Fundraiser)

  39. Marshhay & Smooth cordgrass   Mike Materne and Bea Baldwin (Swamp Supporter Level from 2014 Fundraiser)