A bayou  is a body of water typically found in flat, low-lying areas, and can either refer to an extremely slow-moving stream or river (often with a poorly defined shoreline), or to a marshy lake or wetland. Bayous are commonly found in the Mississippi River region of the southern United States, with the state of Louisiana being famous for them. A bayou is frequently an anabranch or minor braid of a braided channel that is moving much more slowly than the mainstem, often becoming boggy and stagnant, though the vegetation varies by region. Many bayous are home to crawfish, certain species of shrimp, other shellfish, catfish, alligators, and myriad other species.

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