Life on the Chickahominy

Late spring is a heady time on the Chickahominy River. Thick cypress trees with knobby knees rise out of dark, tannin-stained waters. Vibrant yellow prothonotary warblers flit among the greening trees and blooming wildflowers. Occasionally, the river's surface explodes as a toothy chain pickerel makes a meal out of an unwary fish. The river, which winds through the forests to the east of Richmond, courses across classic Southern swamps on Virginia's Coastal Plain. 

In mid-May, the Chesapeake Bay Foundation partnered with Virginia's Department of Environmental Quality to canoe the Chickahominy with the Watershed Educators Institute, made up of field educators from organizations across Virginia. Below is just a glimpse of that beautiful day out on the water . . . 

 --Text and photos by Kenny Fletcher, CBF's Virginia Communications Coordinator

1
Paddlers gaze up at an osprey nest high in an old cypress tree. Osprey pairs usually mate for life and often return to the same nest year after year.
2
River and forest merge on the Chickahominy, allowing intrepid canoeists to explore watery passageways among the trees.
4
CBF Educator Alex McCrickard examines a yellow drake mayfly that had fallen into the river.
5
A feisty mud turtle comes out of its shell.
6
A fisherman shows off a bright yellow perch reeled in from a dock along the Chickahominy.
7
Field educators examine fish caught in a seine net pulled near the river's shore.
8
A small colorful sunfish pulled from the Chickahominy shines in the May light.

 

Kenny Fletcher

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CBF in Virginia  

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