Friday, February 08, 2008

Katrina's Trees

A few months ago everyone latched on to the news about the "death toll" of trees in Katrina's wake. Touted as "ecological catastrophe that killed or severely damaged about 320 million trees in Mississippi and Louisiana"

Image above: The devastation of southern Gulf Coast forests by Hurricane Katrina was documented in before-and-after images from the Landsat 5 satellite. The Interstate 10 "twin-span" bridges that cross Lake Pontchartrain east of New Orleans is seen here pre- and post-Katrina. Bayou Sauvage National Wildlife Refuge is the large patch of forest (green) the lower left portion of the LEFT image, which suffered heavy tree mortality (seen in red in the RIGHT image after the storm)". Credit: USGS

My daily commute takes me through the heart of Bayou Sauvage and it's there that I have watched the trees slowly dying off. It's especially obvious during these winter months, when there's no other vegetation hiding this slow death. Here are some pictures taken at the end of January along Highway 11 in Bayou Sauvage.

(click on pictures for full-sized version)

The wind isn't blowing in this picture; this tree looks like this when there are no winds.

This tree was bent and broken by the storm's winds. One of thousands and thousands of trees like this in the area from Southeast Louisiana to the middle of Mississippi.

Despite the destruction done by the storm, I find the colors and textures in this picture to be beautiful

Bayou Sauvage is still home to a wide array of wildlife, as evidenced by this guy

There were hundreds of ducks and other waterfowl out on this day, just going about their daily business while we spied on them


John personal trainer Austin said...

Those are great pictures. That is an area I traveled often before Katrina. I loved driving around that area. I do remember an old motel that had been abandoned after Camille. I am sure the evidence of Katrina will be around for years to come. I have since moved to TX, but I fondly remember frequent back roads trips going from New Orleans to Waveland MS said...

The guy is definitely just, and there's no doubt.