Phillips 66, LDWF team up with CCA to add critical reef habitat

Coastal Conservation Association (CCA) of Louisiana, Phillips 66 Lake Charles Manufacturing Complex, Building Conservation Trust (CCA's National Habitat Program, the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) and DLS Energy will begin construction on an expansion to the Brad Vincent Reef in Calcasieu Lake next month. 

This will be the first enhancement to the original Brad Vincent reef, constructed by CCA and conservation partners in 2012 in memory of Lake Charles area conservationist Brad Vincent. The original project created roughly 6 acres of reef habitat in mid-Calcasieu Lake that has become a popular hot spot for Big Lake anglers. The expansion project will consist of another 2,000 tons of limestone or crushed concrete spread over 3 to 4 acres adjacent to the original reef.

Enhancement of this reef will support a variety of marine life, including oysters, crustaceans and small baitfish. These species serve as forage to sportfish like redfish, speckled trout, flounder and others, making this new habitat a perfect spot for Louisiana anglers. The new, larger reef footprint will provide additional opportunity for anglers to enjoy. The reef’s central location in Calcasieu Lake make it easily reachable from numerous area marinas and landings.

This project marks the first collaboration between CCA Louisiana and Phillips 66 and the fourth reef project completed by CCA in Calcasieu Lake. In 2007, CCA built Turner’s Bay Reef, followed by the Brad Vincent Reef in 2012. In 2017, CCA Louisiana completed “Big Jack’s Reef” in southern Big Lake, in memory of conservation legend Jack Lawton, Sr. The Vincent Reef expansion will be the 23rd artificial reef project overall to be built by CCA Louisiana across the state.  In total, CCA has constructed more than $8 million in marine habitat projects on the Louisiana coast in recent years.

Funding for the project will be provided through CCA’s Building Conservation Trust, Phillips 66 Lake Charles Manufacturing Complex and LDWF‘s Artificial Reef Development Fund. In-kind materials and services will be provided by DLS Energy. Continued support of CCA Louisiana’s habitat program is provided by the Paul Candies Family.

Final preparations and planning for the project is being completed now, and organizers expect the construction to occur in late May or June.