Trash Pickup at Local Alabama Lake near UA

Trash Pickup at Local Alabama Lake near UA

This video is a culmination of research on Alabama’s Biodiversity that I completed for an English Journalism course. My goal throughout the research project was to inform about the incredible biodiversity throughout the southeast, especially Alabama. Because of its environmental conditions, it is an unexpected hotspot for biodiversity. Geographically, Alabama is almost subtropical; it has warm humid summers and rather mild winters.

I chose this lake, in Van De Graaff Park and Arboretum in Northport, Alabama because of its proximity to the University of Alabama Campus and its beautiful surroundings. However, it has one major fallback and a very threatening fallback to biodiversity as a whole; it has a horrible trash problem. It has RV campgrounds that attract the worst kind of people, culminating in mass amounts of trash around the paths and camps. People will throw out any old trash into the bushes, which are now filled with beer cans, bottles, boxes, and nasty trash. It is incredibly harmful to not only the environment but also the animals both land-based and aquatic in the area.

I couldn’t report on this trash problem and proceed to not do anything about it. I strapped on my boots and gloves, grabbed trash bags, and got to work. In several hours I was only able to cover a small area of the lake and filled up 3 large trash bags. There is so much more work that needs to be done in the area to keep it clean. I hope this emplores people to be more mindful of their footprint and to keep our environment clean, healthy, and thriving. It is truly a sad sight.

Research sources for this project:

Davis, William J. et al. “Chytrid Diversity of Tuscaloosa County, Alabama.” Southeastern Naturalist, vol. 12, no. 4, Dec. 2013, pp. 666-683. EBSCOhost,

Elliott, Todd F. and Steven L. Stephenson. “Mushrooms of the Southeast.” Timber Press, 2018. EBSCOhost,

Praskievicz, Sarah and Cehong Luo. “Environmental Instream Flows to Support Physical Habitat for Freshwater Biodiversity in Alabama’s Rivers.” Southeastern Naturalist, vol. 19, no. 4, Oct. 2020, pp. 717-741. EBSCOhost,

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *