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January,

2007

A special edition that highlights Kaw Valley Heritage Association’s many programs and endeavors. We are proud of our
accomplishments for 2006. This newsletter is a culmination of The Watershed, The Wakarusa Review & The Dragonfly
Messenger newsletters. With one organizational newsletter, all partners will become familiar with our ‘other’ projects.
Please enjoy, and we appreciate your feedback! Here’s to 2007!
Funding for KVHA Projects are currently provided by grants from the KS Dept. of Health & Environment and by the contributions
of partners and program users. KVHA is a federally recognized 501c(3) non-profit organization. Donations are tax deductible.

By Alison Reber
The Coon Creek Wetland Restoration Project has
become an important spring board for additional
restoration and education pursuits. Written by KVHA volunteer, Alphild Rees
The wetland area is part of a larger complex of public Also known as “Catdaddy,” R.R. Shumway has been tak-
land and the project attracted interest in strengthening ing people out to rivers and lakes since 1985, showing them the
opportunities for nature-base recreation / education. best places to cast a line in Kansas and Missouri. Shumway could
These concepts are diverse and involve interacting with most easily be found traversing the local waters throughout the
the environment on a variety of scales. Recreation- week, but he has also been known to speak at ProBass conven-
themed community events are being considered for tions. “I’m out
short grass prairie and hardwood forest restoration there preachin’ the
projects. We are especially interested in freestanding “The river will tell you
gospel,” he says
“opportunities for observational interactions” as
with a chuckle,
what you want to know if you
opposed to measures that will increase foot traffic.
though it quickly know how to read it....but girl,”
The project site is along the Oregon Trail corridor. becomes clear that he says to me, a grin spreading
We're now trying to coordinate habitat and viewscape the world of fishing
across his face, “you got to go
restoration projects based on primary source is no joke to him; to
documentation As part of an initiative to inventory hear him talk is to to know. The more you go, the
emigrant trail sites in northeastern Kansas, a GIS hear to voice of more you know.”
workshop is being planned for next spring. Volunteers someone who has
will be trained to use field observations to verify and fallen head over “Catdaddy” Shumway
then map locations described in emigrant journals. heels into the Kan-
sas River for fishing.
StreamLink provides basic stream assessment
workshops for interested individuals and groups It is a love that
implementing watershed restoration and protection comes honestly.
strategies (WRAPS). We hope to improve our workshop The son of a bait shop owner, his first job was working the store,
participants’ recognition of potential cultural resources. learning about the connection between fishing and the community,
Severe stream bank degradation is exposing new, deep as lesson taught to him by his father. As we sit under an awning in
layers of the archaeological record. At the same time, his front yard and sip iced tea, he tells us how his father would ex-
there are more eyes looking in the right place at the tend store credit to locals who were broke. “Dad liked people,”
right time. The challenge is making sure they know Shumway explained. “He let them charge because they were part
what they're looking for. Preliminary field assessments of the community.”
can help focus and prioritize the restoration and The small act of extending store credit also demonstrated
protection efforts across multiple disciplines.
that his father understood the psychological impact of fishing upon
(Continued on page 5) (Continued on page 7)

Coon Creek Wetland looking east.


Kaw Valley Heritage Alliance
A Note from the Director...
412 E. 9th Street For nine years I've watched many KVHA projects begin and can happily report
that I've seen very few end. It's not that we haven't gotten anything done. Many
Lawrence, KS 66044 final project reports have been written.
(785) 840-0700
The reports have careful boundaries, dates on a calendar. We have to untangle
Fax: (785) 843-6080 time to separate the strands of projects from one another. Projects wind around
kvha@kvha.org one another, seamless and yet distinct.
Like hand spun yarn, continuity is a thing of beauty.
KVHA Staff
I am extremely proud of 2006. People and projects seemed to fit and the days
Alison Reber, Executive Director seemed full of energy. However, I can’t point to a single day on the calendar
Christine Boller, Program Director when we were successful.
Success doesn’t come in simple, measurable increments. It’s not just about plan-
Tyson Combs, Intern ning ahead. It’s about anticipation….and it’s about being ready for change.
Jason Dick, Intern In this newsletter, the projects are interwoven to give readers a sense of the cohe-
sion that hallmarked 2006. The dividends of continuity will play out in 2007.
We anticipate success, we have planned for success, and we’re ready for whatever
Board of Directors contingencies come our way. Welcome 2007!
Dale Lambley, President Alison Reber, Executive Director
Paul Liechti, Treasurer
Will Boyer, Secretary
Bob Burkhart, Public Affairs KVHA Calendar (in brief…)
VACANT, At-Large 6th Annual Kansas Farmer’s Market Conference
VACANT, At-Large Monday, February 5, 2007, 10 am to 4 pm at the public library in Topeka at 1515 SW
10th Ave. Speaker: Larry Johnson, a flower grower and manager of Dane County
Farmers’ Market in Madison, Wisconsin. Topics will include marketing tips, chef
demonstrations, electronic newsletters, Electronic Benefits Transfer systems & spe-
cial events.

OSHER Institute for Continuing Education class


Thursdays , February 22, March 1 & March 8 from 7-9 p.m. Taught by Alison Reber,
Executive Director of KVHA & Bob Burkhart, KVHA board member. The three-part
class will address past, present and future relationships among people and water
from the Westport Landing to the Wakarusa Watershed River Crossing.
"StoryTech" (1950-2049).
Oregon-California Trail Association(OCTA) workshop
OCTA’s preservation training program covers three aspects of trail preservation:
mapping, marking and monitoring (the 3Ms). Two-day( May 5-6) workshop covering
the Lawrence area. If interested contact Travis Boley at tboley@indepmo.org.
7th Annual Student Gathering, Friday April 6
High School student event that combines learning, col-
laboration & stewardship. Hosted by StreamLink. Inter-
ested science teachers please call our office, 785-840-
0700.

StreamLink Mudscapes Events:


April 12, WABCO Wet & Wild, Mission Valley
April 13, Hillsdale Watershed Festival
April 20, E.A.R.T.H. Watershed Festival, Dickinson Co
May 2, Osage City Water Festival

HAPPY SPRING!

2
New Beginnings: Wakarusa StreamLink’s Basic Stream
Wetland Learners Assessment Workshops
Baker Wetlands provided the optimal teaching habitat for StreamLink’s summer season included two stream
collaborative efforts on behalf of StreamLink, Jayhawk Audu- assessment workshops at Branded B Ranch near
bon Society & Kansas Biological Survey. The spring pilot Perry Lake and Morning Star Ranch near Florence in Marion
County. Both groups proved to be inquisitive and fun, with a
field days included fourth-graders from Cordley and Schwe-
nice balance of agency employees, landowners, and teachers.
gler Elementary schools. The 90 plus students rotated
The two day course is a comprehensive study of stream ecol-
through several stations, including; water chemistry, macro- ogy, hydrology, habitat, restoration and appreciation. Class time
invertebrates, flora, is split between classroom presentations and the field.
fauna, art & journaling.
The presenters included; Phil Balch and Chris Mammolitti from
In December, KVHA & the Water Institute, a non-profit organization, located in Topeka.
JAS were awarded an Their expertise in stream bank restoration takes them all over
Elizabeth Schultz envi- the country. Paul Ingle, from the Melvern Lake Watershed
ronmental grant for Water Quality Project, spoke on stream hydrology and the ba-
their proposal, Waka- sics of a stream assessment. Rebecca Moscou and Rhonda
Janke, from Citizen Science, based out of Kansas State Univer-
rusa Wetland Learn-
sity, demonstrated step-by-step testing and analysis of water
ers, which gives stu-
testing.
dents the opportunity
to experience the di- The June workshop was located at Branded B Ranch, on the
versity of the wetland Students and teachers gather on the western side of Perry Lake. The local streams that were ex-
Baker Wetland boardwalk . plored and assessed were Slough and Little Slough Creeks.
habitat. There are
Like the rest of the summer, the temperatures were uncomfort-
going to be 15 field
able, but stream exploration provided the perfect respite. The
trips planned for spring and fall of this year. Monies from August workshop, at Morning Star Ranch in Marion County was
the grant will help fund transportation for the kids and pay requested and planned with the help and enthusiasm of Peggy
KU science student interns a small stipend for teaching. Blackman, the coordinator for the Marion Reservoir 319 Water
Quality Project.
The complexity of a wetland habitat goes through numerous
changes seasonally making it a perfect learning environ- The exploration of Spring Creek and Cedar Creek proved unfor-
ment for exploration and discovery. Our goal is to bring gettable. Spring Creek’s water quality was pristine, enough so
awareness to this invaluable local wildlife landmark. to house a fresh water sponge, which most of us had never
Please watch our website for updates and pictures. Cur- seen. It was a definite “Look, but don’t touch moment”. Cedar
Creek was home to a diverse population of mussels. Vaughn
rently this opportunity will be offered to grades 4 and up.
Weaver, an Environmental Water Quality Specialist for the City
Sign up information will be available via the Streamlink web-
of Wichita, imparted knowledge and enthusiasm of the bivalve
site at www.streamlink.org.

For more information about the grant award please go to


the Jayhawk Audubon Society’s online newsletter at http:// (Continued on page 5)

skyways.lib.ks.us/orgs/jayhawkaudubon/December_06%
20newsletter.pdf

Lawrence child
examines macro-
invertebrates
during her Baker
Wetland field trip.

Go Wakarusa
Wetland
Mary Clark, of the Dillon Nature Center in Hutchinson, and Sandy
Learners! Collins, of West Junior High in Lawrence, use a kick net to collect
macro invertebrates at Slough Creek.

3
Invasive plant communities began to slowly cover the
Welcome to Coon Creek cleared wetland when the remaining parcels were taken
out of production in the '80s. Nearly 30 years later dam-

Wetland !
age to the native wetland ecosystem is still pronounced.
Around 2000, the COE began managing the wetland area
for wildlife habitat.
By Alison Reber Serious habitat restoration takes three layers of conjec-
ture. First, you have to imagine what the micro-
topography would have been before the area was altered.
The Coon Creek Wildlife Area is a diverse tract of public Second, you have to plan out how to mimic the systems
land on the north side of Clinton Lake. The United States that would have kept the ecosystems stable. And third,
Fish and Wildlife Service (USFW) awarded KVHA a you have to step back to the here and now to figure out
$7,000 Five Star grant to assist with restoring a portion of what will happen if the first two happen.
the area's wetland. The grant required cooperation Near its juncture with the Wakarusa, Coon Creek would
among five enti- historically have been bordered by wetlands and intermit-
ties to accom- tent stands of hardwoods. A hawk might have perched
plish a habitat high in a hedge tree, scanning the wetland for prey. A
restoration pro- raccoon might have eaten a crayfish before retreating to a
ject with a pub- rotten tree trunk for the day.
lic education
component. Most of the trees died from over saturation long ago and
KVHA's Stream- many are rapidly decaying. As they break down, the open
Link and Upper water broadens and the diversity of animals able to use
Wakarusa the area shrinks. Among other things these trees provide
WRAPS Pro- perches for birds and turtles.
grams coordi- Throughout the spring and fall more than 400 trees were
View of Coon Creek, looking south toward nated with the planted by area high school students. Water tolerant spe-
Clinton Lake. Corps of Engi- cies such as sycamore, green ash, and burr oak were
neers, the Roger planted in low-lying wet areas. Drought resistant hack-
Hill Volunteer Center, the Douglas County Natural Re- berry and cottonwoods were planted on higher ground.
source Conservation Service, and the Kansas Trails
Council to make this project happen. Seed plantings have been completed upstream where
there's less potential for long-term lake water inundation.
Coon Creek is part of the Wakarusa River Valley, a geo- Layers of native grasses, shrubs, and fescue firebreaks
logically unique watershed that was the farthest southern now stretch north in several tiers from the tree planting
edge of the last glacial intrusion into North America. The area. The land has been contoured with several areas
area has unusually frequent ecotones which translates to that will somewhat retain water. The shrubs will slow
habitat diversity. As the water slowed to juncture with the storm water as it enters the wetland through the natural
Wakarusa River, rich glacial till settled along the tributary stream channel. The grasses will be protected from invad-
stream channels and created the perfect hydric conditions ing species using prescribed burns every few years. Fes-
for a vast, deep wetland complex. Over the course of the cue s t r i ps
last 150 years, these areas were converted to huge but have been
highly flood prone tracks of extremely productive crop used to create
lands. an area of low
The Coon Creek valley is confined by steep rocky hard- vegetation that
wood uplands and shallow sandy ridge lines. Agricultural should help
use in our project area began around 1900. Cropping keep fire from
occurred in the bottomland; the uplands were used for escaping to
livestock. the wooded
areas.
In the '70s the site was purchased by the federal govern-
ment as part of the Clinton Reservoir land acquisition. The wetland
The tributary's juncture with the Wakarusa River was is becoming
Maggie Bixler of Roger Hill Volunteer Center
smoothed away to become part of the lake bottom. For re-established
and KVHA volunteer Jason Dick distribute
some distance upstream the creek was deepened, broad- and growing
mulch for the Coon Creek trail.
ened and contoured to limit the stretch of land perma- stronger. It
nently inundated. (Continued on page 5)

4
(Continued from page 4) Welcome to Coon Creek Wetland! (Continued from page 1) KVHA HAPPENINGS

will take many years for it to be truly healthy and a lot of Curriculum partnerships with the Geography,
thoughtful effort to keep it thriving. Environmental Studies, and Anthropology Programs at
the University of Kansas, and the Ecology Program at
The Coon Creek Wetland Restoration Project is happen- Haskell Indian Nations University are emerging.
ing at the Coon Creek Wildlife Area at Clinton Lake. The Partnering topics include using GIS for resource
Wildlife Area is most readily accessible from a gravel protection, wetland assessment and tracking restoration
progress over time, evaluating the watershed specific
parking lot off Douglas County Road 1029 (E 550 Rd).
efficacy of conservation/protection measures, and
This lot is on the ridge line west of the creek. A trail will correlating raw water quality data with sub-watershed
lead you east to a new kiosk installed as part of the Five landuse changes.
Star grant. Volunteers have worked hard to lay a trail that
The local Audubon Chapter has helped piece together a
will take you on east and north. A bench will be installed wetland assessment workshop for elementary students.
at an observation point looking over the wetland. Funding was obtained through a community foundation
to hire 10 college students to serve as field interns for
Driving directions from Lawrence to Coon Creek Wildlife
the workshops. StreamLink's primary responsibility is to
Area: Take Highway 40 west and continue west on technically and pedagogically train the interns.
County Road 442 (N 1600 Road). At the intersection of
County Roads 442 and 1029 (E 550 Rd) turn south and Finally, an environmental history continuing education
class is being offered next spring by the Osher Institute
drive one mile. The parking lot for Coon Creek Wildlife
at the University of Kansas. The three-part class will
Area will be on the left. address past, present and future relationships among
people and water from the Westport Landing to the
Wakarusa Watershed River Crossing.
"StoryTech" (1950-2049).

Teachers and students please join us for the 7th Annual


StreamLink Student Gathering on Friday April 6, 2007! The
event includes speakers, food & stewardship. Meet other
stream teams from your area. This year’s location is in the
Topeka area. For more information, please call Christine at
785-840-0700.

Phil Balch, of
Alison Reber and Travis Daneke stand in front of the new Coon the Water Insti-
Creek Wetland kiosk , that was purchased by the 5 Star EPA tute, speaks
grant. with Sherry
Davis from
P.R.I.D.E. and
Interested in becoming a stream ecology expert with Jenny Jasper
your friends & co-workers? from the Miami
County Conser-
Then… vation District
GET OUT OF THE OFFICE AND GET YOUR FEET while exploring
Spring Creek.
WET!
Find out more about upcoming stream assessment workshops (Continued from page 3)Basic Stream Assessment Workshops
by calling KVHA, at 785-840-0700!
fauna. At last count we had found evidence of at least ten differ-
ent species.
Not only do the stream assessment workshops impart much
practical knowledge, they are also a platform for intra-agency
networking and brainstorming for future collaborations. The
“water” community in Kansas is not large, but we see each other
frequently at festivals and meetings, with little time to visit.
If you are interested in knowing more about stream assessment
workshops, contact Christine at christine@streamlink.org.

5
BIRDING IN MEXICO
By Gabrielle Iversen, former KVHA Project Assistant
In January I went to Mexico as part of a bird watching which is accessible only by river. Residents still farm and speak
tour group. We spent most of the trip in the Sonoran town of their native language of Cahita. When they need to leave the
Alamos, a historical silver mining town in the foothills of the Sierra village and visit a nearby town they canoe or swim to the opposite
Madre with a population of around 6,000. Alamos is surrounded bank.
by beautiful tropical deciduous
In the historic
forest where a hiker can find a mix
haciendas of Alamos, many of
of cacti, ironwood, mesquite and
which have been converted to
palo verde.
luxury hotels, large pools
With a mandate from the glisten, waterfalls run
office to keep an eye out for water perpetually, and large Jacuzzi
issues I asked some of the Alamos tubs abound. As usual wealthy
resident birders who came along travelers are isolated from
on our day trips about water in the shortfalls of local resources. As
community. Mexico, like the U.S., we drove back across the U.S.
has suffered high temperatures border, past shanty towns made
and intermittent draught of tin and cardboard shacks
conditions over the last decade where clean running water is a
and is plagued by water issues. fantasy, I thought about how
They told me that water scarcity money can secure the illusion of
was an issue, even though the everlasting resources, and I
Sonoran desert gets more rainfall wondered for how long.
than most. Alamos has a dry A common site, cattle in the Rio Mayo river.
season from October to June and
a wet season from July to Gabrielle Iversen is now attending graduate school at Lewis and
December. I noticed that people were using rooftop rainwater Clark College in Portland, Oregon .
collection systems to take advantage of those rainy days. I was
told that many households get their water from wells fed by
ancient aquifers that are pumped at unsustainable rates. There is
also city water which is delivered to most townspeople by truck,
perhaps from community wells. Apparently the deliveries are
StreamLink Numbers
unpredictable and meager. Families use large water tanks to hold
water until the next delivery, and are careful to conserve, not January 2005-
knowing when the next supply will arrive.
We took a raft trip down the nearby Rio Mayo, the second
largest river in Sonora. It has been tamed by a large earthen dam,
September 2006
which we saw the underside of, and its waters are now primarily
used for irrigation. This river provides an amazing wildlife habitat
and is rich in history. On the riverbanks we hiked on the ancient El Type of Event Events Participants
Camino Real, ‘the Royal Road’ that stretches into California from
Mexico and visited petroglyphs of indeterminate age. We also Festivals 23 7,730
stopped and visited the small Mayo village of Santa Barbara,
Stream Samplings 27 1,229

Stewardships 13 526

Meetings 25 500

Training Workshops 10 1,215

TOTAL 98 10,674
Events Participants

Ancient aquaduct along the El Camino Real, or ‘The Royal Road’

6
(Continued from page 1) Catfish Daddy

a person—how it provided an escape from the stress and rigors of


What happens when thirty adults ride on a yellow daily life—an understanding that Shumway carries to this day. To
school bus? Adventure! StreamLink partnered with the R.R. Shumway, fishing is food for the soul, and perhaps this is why
Kansas River Canoe Company for a ten-mile Kansas River he is so keen on introducing fishing to younger generations. Like
canoe tour from the new Rising Sun access point near his father, Shumway often gives back to the community, donating
Lecompton to River Front Park in North Lawrence. This tours to groups of children in the community, such as those from
August day didn’t disappoint, there was plenty of sunshine the Shawnee County Mental Health Department. Some of these
and very little wind.
children have “strong problems,” according to Shumway, many of
Our guide, Tom them having never set out on the river before. Nonetheless, he
Farris, manager of the says, “they have a blast…and I enjoy seeing it, too.” He admits that
Kansas River Canoe fewer and fewer kids can be found fishing now in days, but still
Company, kindly donated believes that by introducing kids to the sport of fishing, not only are
his time, canoes, and they more likely to stay away from less wholesome pastimes, but
transportation for our they will also develop an appreciation for the natural world. “Kids
field trip. The invite list are the future of fishing,”
included much he says, leaning back in
appreciated partners and his chair. And despite
affiliates, such as;
the fewer numbers of
Friends of the Kaw,
kids found out on the
Melvern Lake Watershed,
rivers and lakes of Kan-
Miami County NRCS,
Riverfront Development sas, Shumway seems to
Foundation, Lawrence be heartened by those
Journal World and the that are. Awareness of
Leavenworth County the environment is
Magazine. stronger among the cur-
rent generation of kids,
The biggest Lon & Nancy Lewis, of the Topeka Shumway explains, a
surprise was how shallow Chapter of the Sierra Club, take a fact that he tries to capi-
the river was. Due to the sandbar break along the Kansas talize on. The kids, he
drought, it was difficult River. says, ask a lot of ques-
to find areas that were
tions, to which he tells
more than three feet
deep. Normally, the river is about five feet deep. The them: “This isn’t just
sandbars provided an excellent rest and exploration area. drinkin’ water. You got
They gave us clues as to the wildlife that normally inhabits to keep this water as
the area. We found evidence of raccoons, deer, herons and clean as you can…it is “Catdaddy,” R.R. Shumway , holds up a
many other familiar species. life water for everything Kansas Flathead, one of many large
else in water…animals catches in his career.
The day was a success, with very few mishaps. The drink out of it, trees suck
journey wasn’t too hard on the body, and ensured a great water up in their roots.
night’s rest. If you are interested in more information about
canoeing or kayaking the Kansas River, please contact Kansas There is poetry in listening to his descriptions of maneu-
River Canoe Company, located at the Lawrence KOA vering down the Kansas River, and it is obvious that the apprecia-
campgrounds, at 785-842-3877. tion for the natural world that he wants to impart to the future gen-
To read the County Magazine’s article on this event, erations is something that he himself has in abundance. “The river
please go to http://www.mycountymagazine.com/Issues/ is always changing, always living,” he muses when I ask what ap-
County%20Fall%202006.pdf. peals to him about the river. “The river will tell you what you want
to know if you know how to read it....but girl,” he says to me, a grin
Photos courtesy of Bob Burkhart, our newest KVHA spreading across his face, “you got to go to know. The more you
Boardmember! go, the more you know.”
It makes sense that as we drove to meet R.R. Shumway at
Canoers
his home in north Topeka, we crossed over the Kansas River. It is
take a
an odd juxtaposition—the languid and patient curve of the river
break along
overlapped by busy cars and surrounded by industrial development.
one of the
In the hot July morning, the light reflects off the water, shimmering
many sand-
like fish scales. It is framed by old buildings and steel girders, evi-
bars that
dence of human development, but you can tell the river holds its
provided a
very own secrets. As R.R. Shumway puts it, “the Kansas River is
perfect res-
No-Man’s Land.”
pite for the
10 mile Alphild Rees is working towards her English
journey. degree at the University of Kansas.

7
By Evelyn Davis, the history of Bloomington, money is now being raised to
enlarge the physical space of the museum and widen the scope
Shawnee County Conservation District of the collection to include the entire Wakarusa River Valley.
Being a “dare-to-do-dirt” traveler in the true Kan- The name is changing to Wakarusa River Valley Museum and
sas Explorer fashion, there are few roads in the Cultural Center which reflects the expansion and the content of
Wakarusa Valley that I have not traversed at the collection.
some time in the last 40 years. Every season The Clinton Lake Museum is not regularly open during the win-
brings its own set of intriguing vistas; I can get ter, but is available by appointment during the off season. Put
wanderlust at the slightest provocation. this valley jewel on your “must see” list.
I recall an old book, Reading the Landscape by
Mary Theilgaard Watts, which has this passage in
the introduction, “As we read what is written on the
land, finding accounts of the past, predictions of the
future, and comments on the present, we discover
there are many interwoven strands to each story,
offering several interpretations.” With inspiration like
that, who could find monotony in even the most mun-
The University of Kansas School of Journalism's Environ-
dane landscape?
mental Reporting class taught by Rick Musser spent the
Traveling by foot around my own valley provides the summer researching and reporting on Clinton Lake, water
most intimate and revealing landscape stories. Even quality issues, and the interrelationship between this re-
in the roadside ditches are accounts of past and pre- source and the surrounding communities. Partnering with
sent influences written for those willing to take the
WaterLINK, The Journal World, and Channel 6 the class cov-
time to “read.” One of the most common and reveal-
ered topics such as nonpoint source pollution, the history of
ing are the “calling cards” left by passersby the previ-
ous night. These range from animal scat to fast food the area and Clinton Lake, and drinking water quality. This
cups and wrappers. was a multimedia effort, meaning that there are print sto-
ries, photo essays, and video reports. You can find them at
One a recent walk along my county blacktop, yellows
http://www2.ljworld.com/news/out_of_the_tap/.
dominated the flowering plant palette with several
different sunflowers and goldenrod in bloom. Fall List of complete articles at above web address:
asters provided accents with shades of purple and
lavender. The road and ditch were strewn with frag- • Bottle or tap? Depends on taste , by Megan Price
ments of corn cobs and shredded corn stalks and
• Sediment growing problem at Clinton, by Liz Horsley
leaves landing there from the combine that was mov-
ing through the adjacent field. The smell of fall was • Limiting growth leaves some dry, by Fred Davis
in the air; the evening sky was awash with clouds
tinted brilliant mauves, roses, and soft yellows. • Expect busy summer when state cuts park fees, by Erin
Castaneda
A recent car trek uncovered a treasure in the Waka-
rusa Valley. Clinton Lake Museum in the Blooming- • Farmer’s friend also enemy to Clinton Lake, by Sally
ton Park area at Clinton Lake is a valley gem. It has Hardman
poignant stories of changes that came about with the
destruction of the homes and farms in the valley to • Herbicide can get into drinking water, by Liz Horsley
make way for Clinton Reservoir. Set atop a knoll,
the old dairy barn turned museum is the only remain-
• Flood of ’51 gives rise to engineering project, by Zak
ing building in what was once the town of Blooming- Beasley
ton. There are no high tech interactive elements
• Need for dam still subject to debate, by Zak Beasley
here, but the stories of the area are clearly stated
and augmented by artifacts, original documents, and
a plethora of pictures thanks to the forethought, dedi-
cation and determination of the museum director, Throughout the years, KVHA has been lucky
Martha Parker. to have wonderful interns and project assis-
tants. We pride ourselves as being a profes-
Martha’s family farm was one of the first to be de- sional springboard to higher positions.
stroyed to make way for the dam. Martha was for-
ward thinking and saw that the history and culture Rachael Sudlow, who worked part-time while in school at the
would slip away unnoted without intervention. She Rhode Island School of Design, and full-time upon graduation in
and others worked diligently to get those being dis- May of 2005, has left to pursue her jewelry making business.
placed to save pictures, letters, deeds and other Gabrielle Iversen, is currently pursing her M.A. in art education at
documents and also worked to get the Corps of En- Lewis & Clark College in Portland, Oregon. Many of you will notice
gineers to agree to provide a place to house and that Gabrielle did the illustrations for Catfish Cookies, our soon to
display the collection. be published children’s picture book.
Continuing her pursuit of preserving and interpreting Their office desks have yet to be refilled and we miss them greatly!
8
What is a Watershed?A watershed is an area of land that drains downhill to a body of water, such as a stream, lake, river or
wetland. A watershed includes both the waterway and the land that drains to it. Each watershed is separated topographically by
a ridge or hill. A watershed is like a funnel - collecting all the water within the drainage area and channeling it into a waterway.
Watersheds are natural bodies that don’t recognize political boundaries.

The Upper Wakarusa Watershed Protection Strategy Map To find out what wa-
tershed you live in,
log onto the EPA’s
website at: http://
cfpub.epa.gov/surf/
Shawnee County Conservation District WRAPS locate/index.cfm.

Just type in your ad-


dress, so easy!

Shawnee County Conservation UWW WRAPS Numbers in Action


District Receives Grant 67 x BMP’s implemented (44 in 2005 and 23 between
January and June 2006). Impacting more than 28,425
Over the last several years, local and state agencies and organiza-
acres. Total cost of $429,521 with $187,729 in Cost share.
tions have been concerned about both water quantity and quality
issues in the Upper Wakarusa Watershed (UWW) above Clinton 3 abandoned well pluggings
Reservoir. Clinton is the source of drinking water for more than 1 access road
100,000 people. All the ways we use our land impact water qual- 1 brush mgmt
ity and quantity. Yes, that means what you and I do-- in our back-
Publication
1 conservation tillage
yards, on our farms, or in land development (i.e., converting agri- 6 fencing Outreach
cultural land to roads, housing, or commercial uses).
1 field borders
3 Wakarusa Review
Shawnee County Conservation District applied for (and received) a 1 filter strips
newsletters - 7134
grant from the Kansas Department of Health and Environment to 7 grass plantings
mailed
involve landowners in Lynn Creek and Six Mile Creek sub- 4 grassed waterway or grassed wa-
watersheds at the grassroots level. These grant funds pay for terway restorations 4 Educational bro-
bringing in local landowners to prioritize the UWW WRAPS for their 2 livestock feeding sites chures - 525 dis-
sub-watershed, placing demonstration projects on the ground, and 2 nutrient mgmt facilities tributed
for educational events and activities. 4 onsite wastewater systems (and
upgrades) 4 Promotional
A general meeting was held in the Lynn Creek sub-watershed in brchures & mail-
2 pasture/hay plantings
early August to which about 200 landowners were invited. A gen- ings - 5445 dis-
2 pipelines
eral overview of the UWW WRAPS was presented. The greater part
5 prescribed burnings tributed
of the meeting was devoted to small group discussions in three
areas of concern: grassland management, livestock management, 1 pumping plants 3 Flyers/fact sheets -
and developing land. These groups then prioritized concerns 2 range plantings 400 distributed
based on their knowledge of the local area. Also from this meet- 1 seedings of declining habitat
ing, a stakeholder group evolved. This stakeholder group has met 1 Website
4 soil tests
several times to prioritize targeted demonstration projects and 1 stream bank stabilization 13 Posters/displays -
education activities. 2420 people co-
4 terraces (or restorations)
The Lynn Creek plans include a prescribed burn training 2 trash & area control tacted
(classroom style) and cost-share for terrace restoration. They also 1 tree shrub establishment 1 Database of part-
came up with an innovative approach to facilitate septic tank 1 watering facility ners and stake-
pumping. Funds will be available for those who do not have clean 1 well holders - 4787 en-
out risers to pump their tanks and install the risers, which should tries
3 wetland construction
encourage landowners to pump tanks regularly since the lid does
1 wetland restoration
not have to be dug up each time the tank is pumped. The Six Mile
plans are still pending. For more information, please contact the 1 wildlife-upland area mgmt
Shawnee County Conservation District at (785) 267-5721 ext 3. 1 windbreak establishment

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Calling all streambanks for a “WIN, WIN” opportunity! StreamLink and UWW WRAPS are
joining forces to help landowners within the Upper Wakarusa Watershed who may need assistance
with streambank stabilization. StreamLink is looking for volunteers who will help collect and in-
stall willow cuttings, and UWW WRAPS are looking for landowners who need assistance with
streambank stabilization. Please call KVHA at 785-840-0700, if you are interested.

New & Improved WRAPS


Partners
Kansas StreamLink is a statewide watershed education • Shawnee County Conservation District
program of the Kaw Valley Heritage Alliance (KVHA). • Army Corps of Engineers
KVHA's dedicated staff and leadership have extensive
experience with watershed community development. • Osage County Conservation District
Watershed restoration and protection of the Wakarusa • Osage NRCS
River Valley is also a major project of the Alliance.
• Wabaunsee Conservation District
StreamLink began working with stream teams in 1998.
We have extensive records of Kansas' stream teams • WaterLINK
including local program details, group activity logs, site
records, and observation submissions. StreamLink's
• No-till on the Plains

watershed-correlated website provides a public inter- • Rural Water Districts


face with local stream teams.
• Wakarusa Watershed District
The program uses a variety of multidisciplinary and
multimedia techniques to provide for Kansas' watershed • Grassland Water Quality Project
educational needs. Instructional support is tailored to • Overbrook Pride Park
specific watersheds and designed to fit the needs of
program participants. • Bowersock Mills & Power Company

StreamLink is also available for the design and devel- • Douglas County Farm Bureau
opment of community water resource projects. • Douglas County Livestock Assn.
StreamLink can help WRAPS groups: • Osage County Farm Bureau
* strengthen stakeholders' working knowledge of wa- • Osage County Farm Services Agency
tershed ecology,
• Kansas Farm Bureau
* develop the stream assessment competency of com-
munity volunteers, • City of Lawrence

* coordinate and recruit stream teams and student • ECO2


groups, and
• State Association of Kansas Watersheds
* creatively engage outreach audiences.
Education and outreach is essential for addressing
many of the goals identified in WRAPS. A comprehen-
sive plan for education and outreach helps prioritize,
focus, and target resources.

StreamLink can help WRAPS groups:


This summer the KVHA office decided to have a BIG clean
* identify core outreach concerns among diverse stake- sweep of the office. It felt awesome to organize and clear
holders, out a few odds and ends. The biggest help was calling the
* complete educational needs inventory, City of Lawrence’s Business Hazardous Waste Department.
Instead of throwing away old paint, and other potentially
* map audience and content priorities, noxious chemicals, we called in the professionals. They
* determine best educational practices, and came and surveyed what needed to go, made an estimate
(households are free) and gave us a time to drop off the
* coordinate stakeholder resources and capabilities. waste at their facility. The consensus? Very convenient,
with no guilt of throwing away hazardous waste. Can’t beat
that! Please call the Waste and Recycling Department at
Please go to www.streamlink.org for (785)-832-3030, if you have waste to dispose of responsi-
more information! bly.

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Willow Cuttings Can
the top (closest to the branch tip) and the bottom (closest to
the trunk) of cuttings. They can make each bottom cut at a
slant, which will make driving the cutting into the ground
Halt Stream Washouts easier. They also can dip each cutting top in a 50-50 mix of
white latex paint and water.

MANHATTAN, Kan. – If next to a body of water that flows or * To stay viable, cuttings must stay moist during hauling and
sometimes floods, bare earth is simply soil loss waiting to hap- storing. On-site, they can even rest in the stream until
pen. planted.

“Sometimes grazing or even wildlife is at fault. But many erod- Goard recommends that landowners get site-specific advice
ing stream banks have lost their vegetative cover during floods by contacting a professional forester while planning a willow
or as a result of housing or farm expansions. Now the exposed planting. The contact information for the Kansas Forest Ser-
soil is open for scour erosion and bank sloughing,” said Deb- vice’s district foresters is on the Web at http://
orah Goard, watershed forester with the Kansas Forest Service. www.kansasforests.org/staff//index.shtml.

In the central High Plains, fall or spring rains tend to produce Landowners also can get more information from a “Willow
the highest odds for runoff that triggers serious erosion and the Cuttings” fact sheet that Goard has just released as part of
resulting water pollution. a riparian management series. The series is available
through any district forester or Kansas State University Re-
Fortunately, a relatively low-cost way to reduce those odds is an search and Extension county or district office. The fact sheet
activity best done during winter, Goard said, when many other is also on the Web at http://www.oznet.ksu.edu/library/
landscaping and farming chores are on hold. The process is forst2/samplers/mf2751.asp.
basically gathering and planting willow cuttings during the
plants’ dormant season. K-State Research and Extension is a short name for the Kan-
sas State University Agricultural Experiment Station and Co-
On slightly or moderately eroding banks, willow plantings can be operative Extension Service, a program designed to gener-
the primary conservation tactic, she said. In severe erosion ate and distribute useful knowledge for the well-being of
cases, they can supplement more structural techniques, such Kansans. Supported by county, state, federal and private
as tree revetment, which are cut trees anchored to unstable funds, the program has county Extension offices, experiment
streambanks. fields, area Extension offices and regional research centers
statewide. Its headquarters is on the K-State campus, Man-
“Roots of substantial vegetation help bind the soil,” Goard said, hattan.
adding that the willow roots will grow once spring weather
warms the soil. “They increase soil stability by many thousands By Kathleen Ward, K-State Extension
of times. Willows just happen to do that comparatively easily
and quickly.”

Cuttings from the sandbar and black willow species – both com-
mon in Kansas – are effective for streamside plantings, the
forester said. But, three other factors also can have a big im-
pact:

* Cuttings should range from 1 to 4 inches in diameter and


from 2 to 8 feet long. The wider and more forceful the stream,
the greater the cuttings’ dimensions should be, to keep them
from washing away.

In general, cuttings can be shorter next to the water and get


longer as they’re planted up the bank, because when they’re
driven or augered into the ground, their base must end up at or
below the water table. Other than that, they can go 3 to 4 feet
apart in staggered rows.
Travis Daneke of StreamLink creates a
* The bottom end of a cutting must be the one buried in the hole for a willow stake in a stream bank
ground. So, from the first, willow recyclers must keep track of for a stabilization project on Lynn Creek in
Shawnee County.

11
412 East 9th Street
Lawrence, Kansas 66044

A little science, a little history, and a little fish named Rippler.


See the Kansas (Kaw) River through the eyes of a young and timid blue catfish. He
dodges Stinky and Slimy, two bullying channel cats and befriends the biggest cat in the
Kaw - a flathead known as "King Catfish."
Read the story and then learn some more about the real catfish, the places they live, and
the people who know them. There's even an authentic Kaw Valley recipe for catfish
cookies.
"Catfish Cookies" is a great leaping off point for adventures exploring the Kaw by foot,
bike, or even a canoe! Grab your fishing poles, pull up a shady streamside spot, and
break out the catfish cookies.

THEY ARE IN!


Please call KVHA to
get your copy ($12),
840-0700!

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