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False River drawdown begins; officials making up for 2017

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POINTE COUPEE - If you haven't already, officials say it's time to secure your floating docks and boats along the False River, because the water could be coming down pretty quickly.

"If you're on one of the really shallow ends, it's a good time to just start prepping and being ready," Pointe Coupee Parish President Major Thibaut said. 

A year ahead of schedule, this drawdown is a make-up for 2017, when heavy rains cut the process short.

"Wildlife and Fisheries calls for these drawdowns once every three years, but they do have the ability to make up a drawdown if mother nature doesn't cooperate." 

With the gate opened this morning, the water levels should be coming down at a rate of 1-3 inches per day.

"The point is to have a very slow drawdown to mimic a drought, or dry situation. We don't want to just drop the bottom out of it because it could turn over oxygen and perhaps harm fish."

That would be a big problem, since part of the reason for the drawdowns is to help bring back fish. 

"It improves water quality. It also hopefully one day will allow some grass and vegetation to grow back in the False River, which will improve the fisheries."

Officials hope to have the False River at a maximum of six feet below pool stage to expose more of the lake's bottom to the sun.

In order to get the water level down by five feet, officials say they will have to keep the gates open until January. 

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