Episode 406: Watersheds
Water is the great architect of Earth and a defining factor for the location and movement of life on this planet. Without water, our world would look very different; without the watersheds which capture, coalesce, move, and recycle water throughout a natural system, human and wildlife habitats would not be the same. Freshwater rivers, streams, and lakes are some of the most heavily utilized and pressured natural systems on the planet; these critical habitats that have taken the brunt of negative human actions for years. Now, more than ever, we must learn to safeguard our watersheds for the protection of all life that depend on them.
In This Episode
A special thanks to all of our guests in this episode of Untamed!
- Chris Moore, Chesapeake Bay Foundation
- Eric Chandler, Loudoun County Public Schools
- Dr. Dom Ciruzzi, William & Mary
- Tyler Twyford, James River Park System
- Emmanuel Frimpong, Virginia Tech, Department of Fish & Wildlife Conservation
Just what is a watershed? Take a deep dive into the water from the mountains to the bay in this VPM article.
The Clean Water Act was established in 1972 for regulating discharges of pollutants into the waters of the United States and regulating quality standards for surface waters. 2022 marks the 5-year anniversary! Learn more about this important piece of legislation here, and take an even deeper dive into the EPA’s Watershed Academy for webcasts, learning modules, and other resources.
Do you know what watershed you live in? Check out Know your Watershed and learn more about your particular region on this interactive website. Continue your exploration in Project Wet’s interactive website here, and use this runoff simulation website to see how your actions at home affect your watershed. Your local soil and water conservation districts are also an excellent way to get involved and learn more about your particular area. In our Chesapeake Bay watershed? Check out this new collaborative project that shows the changes in land use and land cover throughout the Chesapeake Bay watershed.
Depending on your particular home habitat, there are a number of ways you can help your watershed.
Have land near a waterway? Plant a riparian buffer to protect water quality.
If you have cattle on your property, fence them out of waterways to reduce nutrient and sediment pollution.
Help your home "soak up the rain" and reduce runoff from your property.
Take advantage of designated hazardous waste days in your community to properly dispose of paints, cleaners, oils, batteries, and pesticides.
Remember to scoop the poop! Picking up waste from your dog helps overall water quality in your community. It's a small act that makes a big difference!
Take the learning experience for your classroom or student group one step further with our specialized activity packets. These interactive resources combine summative reading sheets with writing and critical thinking exercises related to the topics and themes covered in each Untamed episode. Each page is designed to be used individually or as a complete workbook, making this activity packet perfect for educators looking to customize the lessons that can be learned from Untamed.
Are you using these materials and resources in your classroom? We are eager to hear from you! Please let us know, so we can share your classroom projects and experiences with other teachers. Contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Here's What You Can Do
Each episode of Untamed leaves viewers with steps all of us can take to help protect wildlife and the environment.
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