by Maggie Palmer
On May 22, Freshwater Land Trust continued its stewardship efforts at Roebuck Springs by holding a habitat workday.
Roebuck Springs is home to the Watercress Darter, a federally endangered freshwater fish only found in Jefferson County. Roebuck Springs is one of only six places the Watercress Darter is known to call home.
FLT’s board members, junior board members, and staff removed invasive species, such as poison ivy and privet, to allow the area’s native grasses to flourish. As the natural vegetation grows, it will enhance the Watercress Darter habitat, slowing and cooling stormwater runoff before it makes its way into the stream.
Watercress plants also benefit from the removal of invasive plants and undergrowth. With more space and sunlight, watercress plants can create healthy, secure habitats for Watercress Darters.
Workdays like this are part of the stewardship efforts of FLT, which sustain healthy rivers, forests, and wildlife habitats around Central Alabama.