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Battle for Alligator Bayou [Part 1 of 2] (2009)

Louisiana: The State We're In



Genre: News, Public Affairs

Place Covered: Ascension Parish, Louisiana, Iberville Parish, Louisiana

Copyright Holder: Louisiana Educational Television Authority

Date Issued: 2009-10-16

Duration: 00:09:32

Subjects: Environment | Alligator Bayou (La.) | Spanish Lake (La.) | FLOODS | Water levels


  • Sanford, Shauna Host
  • Whinham, Charlie Host
  • Sanford, Shauna Producer
  • Crews, Keith Photographer
  • Bonifay, Frank Interviewee
  • Couhig, Kevin Interviewee


This segment from the October 16, 2009, episode of the series “Louisiana: The State We’re In” features the first part of Shauna Sanford’s report on the battle between the owner of Alligator Bayou Swamp Tours and Spanish Lake landowners in Ascension Parish over the operation of a floodgate and the water levels of Alligator Bayou and Spanish Lake. Sanford reports that officials in Iberville Parish ordered the opening of the floodgate at Alligator Bayou in April 2009. In this part of her report, Sanford interviews Frank Bonifay, the owner of Alligator Bayou Swamp Tours. He discusses: being forced to suspend swamp tours following the opening of the floodgate because of the low water levels in Alligator Bayou; his belief that the floodgate has been properly managed in the past; the environmental damage caused by the opening of the floodgate; and reports showing that the floodgate is not big enough to drain Spanish Lake. Sanford also talks to Kevin Couhig of Resource Environmental Solutions, one of the Spanish Lake landowners, about their research showing that the constant closing of the floodgate has caused environmental damage to the Spanish Lake Sub-basin by disrupting the natural flow of the water between Alligator Bayou and Spanish Lake. Hosts: Charlie Whinham and Shauna Sanford