Virginia >> Members of the Covington-Alleghany Chapter in western Virginia are passionate about conservation. However, they have fairly limited manpower to accomplish on-the-ground projects. So the chapter helps financially support organizations in the community working toward goals that align with the Izaak Walton League’s mission.
One such community organization is the Cowpasture River Preservation Association (CRPA). The Covington-Alleghany Chapter recently donated $1,406 to CRPA to help expand the group’s water quality monitoring program. CRPA’s focus is the 84-mile-long Cowpasture River, which is full of smallmouth bass, rock bass, muskies, and sunfish. Cowpasture River merges with another waterway to form Virginia’s largest river, the James River — which is also Virginia’s largest tributary to the Chesapeake Bay. So water quality problems in the Cowpasture River can have a significant impact downstream, making water quality efforts here a worthwhile investment.
One of the tools CRPA will purchase with the funds donated by the Covington- Alleghany Chapter is a meter that can be submerged in the river to continuously measure the conductivity of the water. This will help set a baseline for dissolved solids — such as phosphorus and nitrates, which can damage water quality and aquatic animal habitat — and alert water quality monitors about significant changes.
“We are so pleased to be able to support the efforts of the Cowpasture River Preservation Association,” says Covington- Alleghany Chapter president Tad Robertson. “This group is working toward one of the Izaak Walton League’s core values: clean water. And all of us who live along the Cowpasture River — and downstream — benefit from their efforts.” And from the generous donation by the Ikes!