Welcome to the RIVERS OF ALABAMA website!
of a Watershed
Alabama is blessed with some of the most
unique river basins in the world! This website is intended to bring these
rivers to life by examining each watershed
individually and in-depth.
The concept of a "watershed"
is the central organizing principle for this website. To understand how
watersheds work cup your hands in front of you as if you were going to drink
from them. Now imagine that your hands are a land form and that a miniature
cloud is raining down upon them. No matter where these miniature raindrops
land, they will begin flowing downward via the creases of your hands, to the
center, and then out of your hands at your wrist. Your fingertips are the
tops of the hills where a rivers headwaters
begin. The middle of your hands are the valleys
where the river flows. The creases of your hands are the tributary
streams that come together to form the river. Where the water leaves your
wrist is the mouth of the river
where it flows into a larger river or eventually the ocean.
This is the basic concept of a watershed. But
a watershed isn't just the river, or even the tributaries and streams that
comprise it. The watershed, more than anything else, is the entire land area
that drains to a given river or stream.
"In 1819, when Alabama entered the Union, its leaders
designed a great seal that featured the state's waterways. In adopting this
symbol they affirmed their belief that the future of Alabama lay with its
rivers. It did, and it still does." Harvey Jackson III, Rivers of History
This website is all about
Alabama's watersheds. It describes what they look like, what types of
aquatic animals live in them, how healthy they are, recreation
opportunities, protected areas, and much, much more.
This website if far from
complete. The knowledge that local individuals have about their local rivers
and streams often far surpasses that of the "so called" experts. If you know
of a publication, a photograph, a unique story, or a unique place that would
make this website more complete and more interesting....PLEASE let us
Click on the BIG MAP link
below to find the watershed that you live in...or explore the whole state,
one river basin at a time.