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Hatcher Bluff Alabama River REM

Alabama Water Watch works to protect Alabama’s precious water resources by training citizens to collect credible water quality data from rivers, lakes, and other local waterbodies.  Educating people about Alabama’s waters and helping them to find a meaningful connection to their watershed is an important part of what we do.  

Lucky for us, Alabama has so much to offer in the way of water resources, it is easy to foster these connections.  With 132,000 miles of streams and rivers, Alabama can call itself “the River State.” Moreover, each river has a unique set of flora and fauna, geology, culture, and history that can provide you with a lifetime’s worth of learning.  

Alabama Rivers

How much do you know about your own river basin? If you live in the Black Warrior River Basin, have you heard of the Black Warrior waterdog? It is a large, aquatic, nocturnal salamander that permanently retains larval characteristics such as frilly, external gills for its entire life. They are listed as endangered and only found in streams within the Black Warrior River Basin.Black Warrior Waterdog. The Black Warrior Waterdog can be up to 9.5 inches long. The Black Warrior Waterdog is nocturnal, has external gills, and prefers rocks, crevices and slabs. It is an endangered species that only exists in the Black Warrior river basin.

The waterdog needs specific habitat substrate, ideally bedrock with little sand that contains rock crevices for shelter and egg laying, to flourish. Therefore, it’s no surprise that their main threat is increased sedimentation. 

Did you know that the Alabama River is the state’s longest river, flowing for 315 miles and draining 11 percent of the state in 18 counties? Free-flowing, or un-impounded, sections of the Alabama river show many high bluffs formed as the chalky soils of the Black Belt were carved away. Hatcher Bluff (estimated to be 350 feet high in 1925) along the Blackwell Bend of the main stem of the Alabama River near Sardis, Alabama.

Check out AWW’s 12 Months of Alabama Rivers campaign to test your knowledge and learn more. During each month of 2021, AWW is utilizing blog articles and social media posts to highlight the unique and interesting characteristics of each major river basin of the state. In addition, we are hosting a webinar series called Basin Banter with Bill, which will feature Dr. Bill Deutsch, founder of AWW and author of the recent publication Alabama Rivers: A Celebration and Challenge. All of the content gathered through the campaign will be posted on the Rivers of Alabama webpage to read about each basin after they have been featured. You can register for the Basin Banter with Bill webinar series on AWW’s Events page.  

Do you have photos or video of your favorite river, creek, or lake? Whether you’re fishing, paddling, swimming, hiking, or simply have a beautiful landscape shot, share them with us through the media submission form 

More Information

If you would like to receive updates for 12 Months of Alabama and other AWW activities, sign up for the AWW Newsletter by going to the AWW website or emailing awwprog@auburn.edu and put “Subscribe” in the subject line.


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