Clean water is very important. Animals (like me!) and plants need clean water to be happy and healthy, and so do you!
People use water each and every day to drink, wash things, and do fun things like swimming. How many ways can you think of that people use water? How many times have you used water today? You might be surprised at how big your list is!
One hundred forty thousand (140,000) people get their water from inside the watershed; that's a lot of people! What would we do if the water was full of trash and dangerous chemicals? That could make people, plants, and animals sick, so it is important to keep our watershed clean!
Lambert's Tips for Clean Water
1. Whenever you wash things outside (like your bike, family car, or dog), make sure to wash them over grass or gravel, not pavement, Grass and dirt will help to clean the soap out of the water before it gets into a stream or lake, but pavement will let the soapy water run right into a storm drain or body of water.
2. Don't litter! Garbage in the watershed can release chemicals and bad bacteria into the water that can make living things sick. When you go for a picnic or play outside, make sure you properly dispose of all of your garbage in a trash can or a recycle bin, and never ever throw garbage out the car window.
3. Clean up food messes inside the house. Leaving food around the house can attract pests like mice, ants, and cockroaches. Your parents might have to use chemicals called pesticides to get the bugs or mice out of the house, and the pesticides can get into water. If you keep your food messes cleaned up, pests are less likely to move in.
4. Properly dispose of leaves and grass clippings. Do you like to rake up leaves in the fall? Playing in the piles is lots of fun, but when you are done, be sure to compost your leaves, or bag them for the garbage truck to take. Never throw leaves or cut grass into a lake, river, pond, or stream.
5. Release wild animals after you've caught them. While it's fun to make friends with frogs, wild animals are not pets. We each have a job to do to keep the water and the environment healthy, and we can't do that from inside a jar in your house!
6. Do not release any store bought pets, aquarium plants, or live bait into the water. It may seem like a nice thing to do, but non-native species (plants or animals that do not usually live in an area) can be invasive, which means that they can do a lot of damage. Hydrilla, which you can learn about with me in the "Whats Happening in the CLW" page, is an example of an invasive species that might have come from a person's fish tank.
7. Don't waste water! The less clean water you use, the more clean water will stay in the lake. Be sure to turn off the water while you are brushing your teeth, try to take showers that are 5 minutes long, and catch rainwater in buckets to use to water your garden.
Do you have any tips for clean water?
You can send me a picture or a letter with your clean water tip to:LambertCayuga Lake Watershed NetworkP.O. Box 348Aurora, NY 13026