Cattail Marsh is a 900 acre wildlife area located in Beaumont, Texas. This marsh is located adjacent to Tyrrell Park and serves as a component of the waste water filtration system for the city. The marsh features a 520 foot boardwalk that was installed in 2016 at a cost of $285,000. Cattail Marsh and the surrounding area support a wide variety of local wildlife and is a popular bird watching site.
As is common in many bodies of water in the area, Water Hyacinth has taken root and spread rapidly across the entire marsh. Water Hyacinth is an invasive plant species that is recognized as one of the fastest growing plant species in the world. The plants primary means of reproduction are runners that eventually form sister plants. It also produces large volumes of seeds that remain viable for up to 30 years. Because of its ability to rapidly reproduce, coverage areas can double in periods as quickly as two weeks.
If left unchecked, Water Hyacinth can completely cover a body of water, resulting in reduced water flow, complete blocking of sunlight to submerged plant species, and a depletion of oxygen from the water itself. These results can have a major detrimental impact on plant and animal species. This plant is difficult to control once introduced to a lake, pond or stream. Water Hyacinth has no know direct food value for wildlife.