On the Ground: Volunteers clean up the Clinton River Watershed

View of the Clinton River.

On Saturday, April 13, 2024, MUCC’s On the Ground program traveled to Yates Park to host the annual Clinton River cleanup in partnership with the Clinton River Watershed Council and Metro-West Steelheaders. MUCC has held a long-standing partnership with these organizations since 2014, and each year we partner with them to host a trash cleanup along the Clinton River. We are grateful for their support and hope to do many more cleanup events in the future.

Benefits of a River Cleanup

Rivers are important because they provide habitat for a variety of fish and wildlife species. Common fish species found in rivers include trout, catfish, bass, and perch. Trout like to occupy cool highland streams, whereas catfish like to hang out in the dark, slow-moving water. Migratory fish such as salmon also swim up rivers each year to their spawning grounds, where they reproduce. Rivers are a very important ecosystem not just for fish and wildlife, but for people as well. A clean river provides access to fresh drinking water for local communities who need it most. Rivers are also used to transport goods such as coal and iron ore. Additionally, rivers can provide us with electricity through the use of dams to power our homes and devices.

Volunteers focus on picking up trash on the Yates Cider Mill walking trails, which run along the river.

Volunteers Clean up the Clinton River

Volunteers focused on picking up trash in the river near Yates Park and across the road on the Yates Cider Mill walking trails. They were able to collect trash both in the river as well as in the areas surrounding the river. Many different things were collected, including fishing line, plastic cups, styrofoam, and a couple of tires. In total, volunteers gathered about 345 pounds of trash and improved 14 acres of fish and wildlife habitat.

Our next river cleanup event is the annual Manistee River cleanup on July 13, 2024. Keep an eye out for updates at mucc.org/on-the-ground! We hope to see you there.

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