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You are here: Home / Funded Projects / SARP Projects W2B / Restoration of Connectivity to Coal Pile, a Backwater of the Arkansas River

Restoration of Connectivity to Coal Pile, a Backwater of the Arkansas River

In order to restore connectivity to Coal Pile, the canals from the Arkansas River into Coal Pile will be dredged with a Mudcat hydraulic dredge, which was recently obtained from federal surplus equipment for use on this project.

Hydraulic Dredge
Hydraulic Dredge

Importance to the Resource: Coal Pile is the most popular backwater for fishing for black bass in the lower Arkansas River.  The winning fish from the Arkansas Big Bass Bonanza, the largest tournament in Arkansas, often comes from this backwater.  The backwater is also popular with crappie and catfish anglers.

The Problem: The openings into Coal Pile have filled with sediment, making fish and boat passage very difficult during most river discharges.  The Arkansas River has lost 9% of the total aquatic area from 1973 to 1999, and most of this loss was backwater habitat.  We will work with the USACE to determine if closing a nearby notched revetment would prevent future sedimentation.

Method: A Mudcat hydraulic dredge will be used to remove sediment from the opening canals that enter into Coal Pile.  Arkansas Game and Fish Commission biologists will do the work. 


Coal Pile, a Backwater of the Arkansas River

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