Columbus State University ‘s Earth and Space Sciences Department recently began a partnership with The Nature Conservancy (TNC) on a stream restoration project in the Upatoi Creek watershed near Ft. Benning. TNC is working to remove several dams and restore streams on their own land, and CSU students and faculty will monitor the area pre- and post-restoration to understand potential habitat improvements resulting from the project.
“The project immerses students in field research, allowing them to work closely with scientists and managers at the nation’s largest and most trusted environmental non-profit, The Nature Conservancy,” said Troy Keller, earth and space sciences professor at CSU.
In addition to analyzing the biotic and physical recover of streams, students will help organize the Society for Ecological Restoration’s Southeastern Chapter conference to be held at CSU’s Oxbow Meadows Environmental Learning Center in October. Through scientific presentations and field trips, the symposium will highlight the research CSU students and faculty conduct as part of the CSU-TNC collaboration.
The Nature Conservancy works with partners across Georgia to improve fish passage and enhance public safety and recreation through dam removal and culvert replacement projects.
The Nature Conservancy’s project is funded by The Coca-Cola Foundation with a goal of improving aquatic connectivity and habitat for the unique species that live in tributaries in the Apalachicola-Chattahoochee-Flint basin.