Elmer's Island Wildlife Refuge
ALERT: Elmer's Island will remain closed until further notice due to cleanup and recovery efforts underway after Hurricane Zeta.
Elmer’s Island Wildlife Refuge features saltwater marsh, coastal dunes, and beaches. The refuge property includes a tidal zone, natural and restored dunes, and an expanse of open area leading to a back bay, which is surrounded by mangrove and saltwater marsh habitat.
LDWF manages the refuge with several goals in mind, including providing access for recreation and educational opportunities, continuing to research the natural resources on the refuge, and restoring and protecting the species that live on the refuge as well as their habitat.
Follow these tips to help us meet our management goals by helping to reduce marine litter on Elmer's Island:
- Do not leave any trash at the refuge—take out everything that you brought with you.
- When fishing, take all nets, gear, and other materials back onshore.
- If you smoke, take your butts with you, disposing of them in the trash.
- When boating, stow and secure all trash on the vessel.
- Participate in beach sweeps at Elmer’s Island and Grand Isle.
Activities and Amenities
Fishing: Elmer’s Island is a popular fishing area for surf and bank fishing (from the access road). Top species include blue crab, spotted and sand seatrout, sea catfish, red drum, and southern flounder.
Birding: The coastal islands are a popular destination for birding, especially during times of migration. You can view a variety of species at Elmer’s Island, including piping plovers, red knots, reddish egrets, marbled godwits, black skimmers and magnificent frigatebirds.
Research: Please contact Julia Lightner (email@example.com; 504.286.4041) if you would like to conduct research at Elmer’s Island.
Overnight camping is not allowed on Elmer’s Island—the refuge closes to the public 30 minutes after sunset.
You can access Elmer's Island Wildlife Refuge via the access road from LA Hwy 1. No motorized vehicles are allowed on the beach at Elmer’s Island. You can also access the island via boat, only from 30 minutes before sunrise through 30 minutes after sunset.
- Use of the refuge will be permitted from 30 minutes before official sunrise to 30 minutes after official sunset. This includes any land access routes to the refuge. No person or vehicle shall remain on the refuge or any land access routes during the period from 30 minutes after official sunset to 30 minutes before sunrise.
- No person shall possess any glass bottles, glass drink containers or other glass products.
- No person shall enter onto or be on the grounds of the refuge during a restricted access period; or alternatively shall do so only in accordance with restrictions set forth by the Secretary.
- No person shall commercially fish, conduct any guiding service, hunt, pursue, kill, molest or intentionally disturb any type of wildlife on the refuge, except for the legal recreational harvest of living aquatic resources.
- No person shall be in areas marked as restricted by signs posted by LDWF.
- No motorized vehicles are permitted.
- Non-consumptive users need no permits of any kind for beachcombing, picnicking, swimming, etc. Anyone fishing recreationally will need a fishing license if over the age of 16.