Sydney Smith, AWW trainer & monitor extraordinaire!

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Sydney Smith is a welcome addition to the AWW family as both a monitor and a trainer. She started monitoring a couple of years back while pursuing her studies, a Bachelor’s degree in Environmental Science at Auburn University. She quickly pursued becoming an AWW trainer last year, and conducted her first Water Chemistry and Bacteriological Monitoring workshops last month! Her enthusiastic, altruistic spirit is evident from the moment you meet her!

The moment Sydney's interest in water resources began in Monkey Park, Opelika!

The moment Sydney’s interest in water resources began in Monkey Park, Opelika (note her levitation; a few years ago)!

Let’s get to know Sydney a little better: Continue reading

AWW Infographic 2.0

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You may recall our previous AWWareness blog article, AWWsome Infographic! .  We were thrilled to receive an all-time record number of responses to the post, requesting use of the beautiful infographic that Miss Jennie Powers created as an AU class project. Folks from all over the state asked if they could use the new infographic in their education and outreach efforts. Our answer – DEFINITELY, PLEASE DO! Jennie, in all of her kindness, gifted her work to AWW, and would be thrilled if you/your group/your school/your agency would utilize her work to increase awareness of our bountiful aquatic biodiversity here in Alabama. Continue reading

AWWsome Infographic!

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AWW has been blessed with some fabulous folks over the years who have given of their time, talent and treasure to the betterment of the Program. Here is a recent example.

We here at the AWW office were asked recently about what we’d like to have done in the form of an infographic by our IT assistant, Jennie Powers. She needed to develop an infographic for a class she is taking here at AU.  I thought for about half a second and said ALABAMA’S AWESOME AQUATIC BIODIVERSITY! In my unbiased opinion, I believe that every child (and adult) in Alabama should know that this state ranks NUMBER ONE among all 50 states in aquatic biodiversity (including freshwater fish, snails, mollusks, crayfish and turtles!,  see Biodiversity in Alabama and Fishes of Alabama)!  The hundreds of beautiful fish species that inhabit our waters (325 native freshwater species and 100 or more marine species – wow!) are true treasures that every Alabamian should be proud of, and cherish! Several rival tropical reef fishes in their colorful beauty! Here are a few of my favorites:

Rainbow darter (Etheostoma caeruleum)

Rainbow darter (Etheostoma caeruleum)

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Memoirs of a Water Monitor

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Last month’s issue of Lake Magazine featured a wonderful story by a long-time AWW monitor about her personal experiences of monitoring on Lake Martin over the past two decades, and why it is important to keep it up. Kathryn Braund, volunteer water monitor and Lake Watch of Lake Martin past-president and current Board member, has been making monthly trips down to her dock with her AWW water chemistry test kit since 1996!

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Click here to read Kathryn’s story

AWW emerges on solid ground

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After weathering a challenging year, AWW is sitting on solid ground, thanks to a visionary new director, dedicated AWW staff, dedicated volunteer trainers and hundreds of dedicated volunteer water monitors throughout the state. In 2015, our aging AWW in-house and online databases were  shut down, and our AU Water Resources Center Director, Dr. Fowler, retired. Under the leadership of our new Director, Dr. Puneet Srivastava, we weathered the storm, and have emerged even stronger. Read about the AWW staff and volunteers’ collective efforts to preserve and protect the waters of Alabama in our AWW 2015 Annual Report.

AWW Annual Report

AWW 2015 Annual Report

Smith Lake folks enthusiastic about lake stewardship!

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AWW Director, Eric Reutebuch, had the pleasure and the privilege of presenting the 2016 ‘Smith State of the Lake Address’ to a packed house at the Smith Lake Civic Association Building near Jasper, AL last week. Eric was thrilled to see such a large, enthusiastic crowd gathered to learn about watershed stewardship!

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SLCA President, John Kulbitskas, welcomes the record crowd to the SLCA annual meeting and the Smith ‘State of the Lake Address.’

Eric explaining to Smith Lake stakeholders how exceptionally clean and precious their lake is, and watershed stewardship actions they can take to keep it that way.

Eric explaining to Smith Lake stakeholders how exceptionally clean and precious their lake is, and watershed stewardship actions they can take to keep it that way.

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