From all of us here at RiverLink, we hope that you and your loved ones are staying safe and healthy during this difficult time. COVID-19 has greatly impacted all of our lives, and our education and volunteer programs are no exception. While we can no longer host lessons in the schools or volunteer service days, we’re excited to share our weekly “Learn to Love the River” email series with you! Each week we will send email(s) with:
We know that this is a tough time for many people, and we hope that the river can provide some much needed hope and distraction from all the craziness in the world. Even though we’re stuck at home, we’re extremely grateful for our beautiful natural resources and the communities that help protect them.
We want to highlight your experience with the French Broad! If you’ve got a story to share about the river we’d love to hear it.
Learn about how our urban environments are connected to stream ecosystems, and how our day to day actions can impact local waterways. Use the information you learn to assess the health of a local stream. Use materials you have at home to create your own watershed for a fun and educational activity with your kids. Read a poem our Voices of the River Contest that illustrates the balance needed for our rivers!
This issue is all about Dragonflies! These little beauties are some of our favorite stream critters, learn about some of the fascinating adaptations that really set them apart. We also provide some guidance for you to safely go out and find some of these little bugs for yourself. And to wrap it all up we’ve got another inspiring poem for our Art and Poetry contest. We hope you enjoy and learn something new!
Let’s learn about erosion! Our land and water resources are highly connected and have some major impacts on each other. In this issue we’ll define the concepts of weathering and erosion and look at how they can impact our waterways. We’ve also included a great activity to build your own stream table and see erosion first hand. Finally we take a quick virtual tour of one of our favorite local stream. We hope you enjoy and learn something new!
This issue is all about stormwater, one of the biggest impacts that human activity can have on local waterways. Check out a virtual lesson of our awesome stormwater model, a great activity about pervious and impervious surfaces, and a recording of our Earth Day Kids’ Festival.
The Kingfisher, a glorious birb that we have right here in Western North Carolina. In this issue we explore what makes this bird so impressive and how it relies on the health of our waterways. We’ve also included links to help you bird watch in your backyard while you’re stuck at home.
Spring is here and our world is now filled with greenery! Unfortunately not all of this green is good… Invasive plant species are a big concern here in WNC. These aggressive plants can take over some of our local ecosystems and cause lots of problems for local species. In this issue we’ll explore what exactly qualifies as and invasive species and take a deep look at one of the most common ones, Kudzu.
We all need nutrients to survive, and the creatures in our streams are no different. In this issue we’ll take a look at how life in and around the stream gets its nutrients, and the impact that too many nutrients can have on an ecosystem. We hope you enjoy and learn something new!
Western North Carolina has many beautiful and unique land forms, but how did they come to be? In this issue we’ll take a look at how the landscapes in WNC formed, what role waterfalls had in that formation, and some interesting facts about caves. We hope you enjoy and learn something new!
Greetings River Lovers! This week’s issue is all about salamanders! Did you know that the southern Appalachian Mountains are a hotspot for salamander diversity? In this issue we’ll learn about these amazing little creatures, as well as learn more about the diversity of this region. We hope you enjoy!