Mar 12, 2010 12:37 PM by Rob Kirkpatrick

Acadiana Regional Awarded Funding For Safety Upgrades

Congressman Charlie Melancon (LA-03) announced today that the Acadiana Regional Airport in New Iberia, Louisiana, has been awarded an $85,000 grant from the Federal Aviation Administration. This investment will help the airport conduct an assessment to determine how to reduce the hazards posed by birds and other wildlife to aircraft using the airport.

"We all know that Louisiana has an abundance of wildlife, but most of us have never had to avoid an alligator lying on a runway or dodge a flock of birds while flying a plane,"
said Rep. Melancon.
"Acadiana Airport has made safety a top priority, and this federal investment will help them ensure that local wildlife doesn't pose a risk to aircraft and the two can coexist peacefully. This grant is also good for the many businesses in south Louisiana that rely on Acadiana as the region's primary general aviation airport to move their people and equipment."

Acadiana Regional Airport will use the federal funds to conduct a
Wildlife Hazard Assessment to identify the wildlife species in the area and assess their numbers, locations, local movements, and daily/seasonal activities.
The results of the wildlife assessment will help the airport better control and mitigate bird activity.

The Wildlife Hazard Assessment is a comprehensive, year-long study conducted by an FAA-approved wildlife biologist, who will take an inventory of all wildlife within a five-mile radius of the airport. For one week each month over the course of a year, the biologist will monitor migratory patterns to identify the potential concerns and evaluate how they can best be mitigated to better protect the
large volume of high-performance aircraft and the numerous other regional users of the airport.

In an attempt to keep out alligators, armadillos, coyotes, opossums, and skunks, the airport has already constructed a perimeter fence. The Wildlife Hazard Assessment will provide other suggestions as to how to best manage local wildlife.

For more information about the Wildlife Hazard Assessment grant, please contact
Mr. Jason Devillier, Airport Manager, at (337) 365-7202.



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