Three Rivers Wildlife Management Area is located in the southern tip of Concordia Parish approximately 50 miles south of Vidalia. It lies between the Mississippi and Red Rivers just north of Lower Old River, thus the name. Primary access routes are Louisiana Highways 15 and 910. Interior access is provided by an all-weather shell road that traverses the entire width of the area just north of the Old River outflow channel and a network of unimproved roads and trails. Additional access is afforded by boat along Red River and the numerous bayous of this tract.
Three Rivers Wildlife Management Area consists of 26,295 acres of Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries property and 1,085 acres of U.S. Army Corps of Engineers property, totaling 27,380 acres.
The terrain is typically flat to depressed, with the only significant changes in relief being elevated roads, levees, and a large man-made sand ridge. Numerous small lakes and bayous are formed by this relatively poor drainage pattern and a large portion of the land is subject to annual spring flooding. This highly productive spring overflow conditions produces excellent sport and commercial fishing.
The forest overstory is classified as bottomland hardwoods. Elevation is a primary factor determining the distribution of tree species in the overstory. Overcup oak, bitter pecan, honey locust, Nuttal oak and cypress are trees found on the lower elevations. On the river front lands and at intermediate elevations hackberry, ash, sweet pecan, Nuttall oak, box elder, and sycamore are the primary tree species. Cottonwood and willow occur in almost pure stands along the man-made sand ridge.
Understory composition and density is influenced by relief characteristics and the duration of spring flooding. Species found on lower elevations are swamp-privet, buttonbush, and hawthorn. On the intermediate to higher contours, box elder, dewberry, poison ivy, swamp dogwood, rattan and green-brier are found.
Game species attracting the greatest hunter participation are deer, turkey, squirrels, and waterfowl, with rabbits and woodcock being of secondary importance. Furbearers available to trappers are raccoon, mink, nutria, beaver, bobcat, fox, otter, beaver and coyote. A wide variety of non-game wildlife common to the bottomland hardwood habitat is present for the non-consumptive wildlife enthusiast.
The area offers limited sport and commercial fishing opportunities. Species caught are bass, bluegill, crappie and catfish. Primary commercial species caught are buffalo, carp, drum, gar, bowfin and catfish. Crayfish and frogging are also popular on this area. A public lottery hunt for alligators has been conducted in recent years, and successful applicants receives 5 tags per hunter.
Endangered species which may occur on Three Rivers are Bald Eagle, LA Black Bear.
Three primitive camping areas have been constructed and are maintained by the Department. All weather access, a source of potable water and comfort stations are available at the Shell Road camping area.
Additional information may be obtained from the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries, Opelousas Field Office, 5652 Hwy 182, Opelousas, LA 70570. (337) 948-0255