MARTINEZ, Ga. (WJBF) – Calling all nature lovers! 

It’s the CSRA’s Stormwater Awareness week, and Reed Creek Nature Park and Interpretive Center is looking for volunteers to help clean up trash along the creek this Saturday.

Experts at the park said water levels in the creek and wetlands have been higher than usual for this time of year. This has many benefits for the animals that live here, but there are also some downsides. 

“With the increase in rainwater, we are part of the stormwater system in Columbia County, so with that increase, we have also seen a little bit of an increase in the litter that has ended up in our wetland,” said Kathryn Degelman, the park coordinator.

That’s why the Columbia County’s Stormwater Compliance Department is working with the park and the “Rivers Alive” program to clean it up.

“Which is a state funded program, and it’s where we actually will go out and clean up the trash,” said Rachael Osborne, the environmental project specialist with Columbia County. “But, the other cool thing is we’re tallying as we go what we’re picking up, and we’re reporting that to the state to kind of understand what’s coming out of our waterways.”

Trash from all over the CSRA can end up in rivers, streams, and creeks like this one.

“A lot of people don’t make that connection,” Osborne said. “They go about their daily lives, and it’s part of their daily behavior, daily activities. But, if you can get somebody to stop and think about their actions, that can really make a difference.”

They need volunteers to grab their waders, pick up trash in and along the creek, and do other tasks.

“Make it a more beautiful space for people to come and enjoy nature without looking over the side boardwalk and saying ‘hey, what’s that water bottle from 1984 doing in the wetland?'” Degelman said.

The clean-up is Saturday from 9- to 11 a.m. To register to volunteer, click here.