Volume 26 - May 17, 2004
CC and Sue Lockwood aboard the Wetland Wanderer.

Heading to Texas

Sue Lockwood driving the Wetland Wanderer toward the Texas border.

A year of school coming to a close feels like an accomplishment for students and teachers alike. Our reaching the Louisiana-Texas border very soon also feels like an accomplishment for CC, me, and Annie on the Marshmission.


The Wetland Wanderer is now cruising west on the Intracoastal Waterway toward the Sabine River. Though when that river is soon finally reached we will have crossed the entire Louisiana coast once, our ultimate goal is to travel across southern Louisiana at least two times. The Pearl River is Louisiana’s eastern coastal border, and the Sabine River is that of the west. Meanwhile, we never did intend to travel along the Gulf because it is usually too rough for the Wanderer. Houseboats are not made for sea travel, so the Intracoastal Waterway, bayous, rivers, and canals have been our “highways.” CC plans on soon touching Texas then heading back east toward the Pearl River in order to start anew a second journey across south Louisiana. Important places that we have either missed or need to see again will be our destinations. 


Please keep in touch with us all of this summer because we will have the new and exciting “Coastal Classroom Album” up on our website, which will be full of interesting pictures and short explanations of our awesome adventures. We will answer as many questions as possible, so please continue to send in your valuable thoughts to “” Good luck with all of your summer plans and make sure to keep our website as one of your “favorites” while we continue to work our way through the unique and beautiful, but endangered and fragile, south Louisiana wetlands.   

Croakers in the Night

A Green Tree Frog finds a spot to rest on Mrs. Sue's head!

“Hey, cut the noise, I want to bark!” is what I howl at the nearby frogs when we are anchored in the marsh, and they start up! These amphibians come in all sizes, and two of my favorite type have leaped aboard The Wetland Wanderer! Green tree frogs are cool! They eat insects (which thrills Sue), have nice croaking voices, and can stick to almost any surface. My two new buddies live on the back and the top of the houseboat and eat freshly hatched insects, including may flies and mosquitoes. At dusk and sunrise the “croakers” have been “serenading us!” They have been on board since we were in the lower Atchafalaya Basin.


Imagine being able to leap 40 times your length, swim with built-in goggles over your eyes, snag a meal with your sticky tongue, and grip almost any surface with your feet. These amazing amphibians do all of these feats and more. The word “amphibian” means something that lives (bios) both (amphi) on land and in water. Frogs and toads are the most common in the amphibian animal group, which also includes salamanders. Tree frogs live almost all over the world and their skins come in lots of colors and patterns. They range in size from that of a hamburger bun down to the size of a lima bean!


Frogs have tiny teeth that help them hold onto food, but they swallow their “chow” whole. Do frogs drink water? Nope! They absorb water through their skin. They always need to stay near damp places because they also lose water through their skin.


Each kind of frog has its own vocal call. Males sing to attracted females, but both males and females croak. There is even a tree frog that barks just like me! Check out the picture of Sue with “Squeaky” on her nose! We named our stowaways “Squeaky” and “Limey!”


Finally, all of you all do well these last few days in school and keep up with me this summer! We will be out venturing on the houseboat till October.

IN CLOSING: All of us living and working on Marshmission hope that you learned lots of interesting and valuable facts about the coastal wetlands of Louisiana. Knowledge is critical for making wise decisions about the future of those wetlands. Please remember all summer long to tune in our website for our exciting updates on the new “Coastal Classroom Album.” Increasing your awareness of the serious threats to our invaluable wetlands has always been our main goal!

Find the meanings of cool words like tributary, sediment, or amphibian and many more...
Click Here!
1. Think of the most interesting topic that you learned about this year in school. (Annie very much hopes that it was one of her creatures!) Write a short paragraph explaining why this particular subject caught your interest.

Visit Tiki the Penguine's website to learn more about our environment.
Click here to find sources of more great information!
la·gniappe    (ln-yp, lnyp)
2. An extra or unexpected gift or benefit

Get painting & photo tips and much more, click here!
L.J. Alleman Middle School asks:
What has been the biggest problem you have encountered while doing Marsh Mission?
CC answers:  The logistics of starting the project was by far the hardest part.  Now that we are on the water in the Wetland Wanderer things are busy, interesting and rewarding.
L.J. Alleman Middle School asks:
About how many black bears ot you think live in the marshes of Louisiana?
CC answers:  According the Black Bear Conservation Committee there are about 500-600 Louisiana Black bears in south Louisiana.
Teacher Tips