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University of Texas Press
A Wetland Biography: Seasons on Louisiana's Chenier Plain / Edition 1

A Wetland Biography: Seasons on Louisiana's Chenier Plain / Edition 1

by Gay M. GomezGay M. Gomez


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Louisiana’s Chenier Plain is a 2,200-square-mile region of marshes and oak-covered ridges (cheniers) that stretches along the Gulf of Mexico from Sabine Lake to Vermilion Bay. Its inhabitants, some 6,000 people of Cajun and other ancestries, retain strong economic and cultural ties to the land and its teeming wildlife. They call it paradise . . . but it is a vulnerable paradise. In this multifaceted study, Gay Gomez explores the interaction of the land, people, and wildlife of the Chenier Plain, revealing both the uniqueness of the region and the challenges it faces. After describing the geography and history of the Chenier Plain, Gomez turns to the lifeways of its people. Drawing on their words and stories, she tells how the chenier dwellers combine modern occupations with traditional pursuits such as alligator and waterfowl hunting, fur trapping, and fishing. She shows how these traditions of wildlife use provide both economic incentives for conservation and a source of personal and place identity. This portrait of a "working wetland" reveals how wildlife use and appreciation can give rise to a stewardship that balances biological, economic, and cultural concerns in species and habitat protection.

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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780292728127
Publisher: University of Texas Press
Publication date: 12/01/1998
Edition description: 1 ED
Pages: 286
Product dimensions: 6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 0.60(d)

About the Author

Gay M. Gomez is Assistant Professor of Geography at McNeese State University in Lake Charles, Louisiana.

Table of Contents

Preface and Acknowledgments1. Comprehending the Complete Wetland2. Chenier Journeys3. Cycles and Seasons4. Alligators5. Waterfowl6. Furbearers7. Fisheries8. Wetlands, Wildlife, and PeopleAppendix 1. Common Fauna and Flora of the Louisiana Chenier PlainAppendix 2. Alligator Research Conducted at Rockefeller Wildlife RefugeNotesSelected BibliographyIndex

What People are Saying About This

Robert Gramling

"This book will appeal to a wide audience, from those who read it for enjoyment to those who use it as a textbook or research tool.... Gomez's clear, almost lyrical style is a pleasure to read, and the imagery captures the essence of the Chenier Plain."

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