Types of Water

With so much development and expansion come significant questions about where clean water will come from and how it will be protected. But not all sources of water are the same and it’s important to understand the different terms.

Groundwater is a generic term for water that exists underground in saturated zones beneath the land surface. What we know as the water table is the upper level of the saturated zone. Most private homeowner wells are tapping into groundwater for their drinking, cooking, and wastewater. Groundwater fills the gaps in underground materials such as sand, gravel, and other rock, similar to how water fills a sponge. This water can be affected by the materials it filters through, picking up minerals along the way.

Surface water is classified as any water found on the surface of the earth, including saltwater and freshwater. This includes waterbodies such as lakes, ponds, creeks, and streams. Surface water is a key component of the hydrologic cycle — evaporating into clouds, becoming rain or snow, falling back to earth, and filling the streams, lakes, and oceans again.

Extraction is the term for removing water from the environment to use for another purpose. If water doesn’t come from a surface water source, it is withdrawn from an aquifer. Aquifers are a body of permeable rock that can contain and transmit groundwater. Aquifers are like underground reservoirs, encapsulated by a confining layer, a layer of impervious rock or clay that restricts the flow of water to or from an aquifer. Confined aquifers, like the Floridian Aquifer, are commonly used for drinking water.

U.S. Geological Survey Map of the Floridan Aquifer

Ogeechee Riverkeeper hosted an informational webinar on aquifers, groundwater and sustainability with James Reichard, Ph.D., professor of geology at Georgia Southern University (Statesboro) on February 6, 2024. The recording is available to view.



Dog Days of Summer


The month of August is historically known as the Dog Days of Summer which “refers to a period of particularly hot and humid weather occurring during the summer months of July and August in the Northern Hemisphere” (almanac.com) and dates back to ancient Greek, Roman & Egyptian traditional beliefs.

Sammy, Mel’s dog

Astronomy even plays a role in deciphering when the “dog days” will be each year. Sirius the Dog Star, is a part of the constellation known as Canis Majoris and is associated with nearby Orion the Hunter.

Kali, Kris’s dog

Other than our solar system’s Sun, Sirius is the brightest star that we can see. When Sirius rises at dawn, that signals the beginning of the “dog days,” which were believed to be higher temps and more humidity.

Pangu, Ben’s dog

(If you’ve read/seen Harry Potter, you might learn something about the character Sirius as well!)

As a part of this activity, we ask that you do several things:

  1. Take a picture of your dog in an ORK pet bandana, share with us or tag us on social media. 
  2. See what else you can research and learn about the history of the Dog Days of Summer.
  3. Try to find Sirius the Dog Star in the night sky (If you need help locating it, there are several free apps to learn about stars and constellations).

Throughout month of August only, our pet bandanas will be on sale for $7!

Dexter, Victoria’s dog
Maisie, Meaghan’s dog


Responsible Hunting and Fishing

Everyone can be environmental stewards and lead by example with responsible and ethical outdoor practices, especially when it comes to hunting and fishing. There are 3 main ways you can help:

  1. Take the GA DNR required Hunters Safety Course. After completion, you buy a Hunting/Fishing license to help support conservation and for data analysis of wildlife management (more info below).
  2. Properly dispose of animal remains and fishing tackle – NOT in a waterway. Many boat landings have receptacles specifically for plastic fishing line.
  3. Join the Georgia Hunters for the Hungry program and donate wild game to families in need.

One of the best ways all of us can create a better public understanding of hunting and fishing is to create a better public awareness of the important role that hunters and anglers have played in conservation and improving our natural resources. Together with hunting and fishing license fees, federal aid programs have funded game animals and sport fish conservation, habitat acquisition and outdoor recreation opportunities both in Georgia and throughout the country.

– georgiawildlife.com

Licenses & Seasons

In the State of Georgia, a license is required to hunt and/or fish. You can buy an individual hunting or fishing license, or the combined Sportsman license. In general, licenses last one year from the date of purchase. View the options to choose the right one for you. 

It is now required to order a saltwater license (free addition) if you buy the Sportsman or fishing license, as well as a harvest record for hunting certain species.

Data collection helps with population control, wildlife management, reducing poaching and illegal activity, amongst many other reasons. If you see suspicious activity, report immediately to your local game warden.

Follow all hunting season guidelines. They are part of the responsible management of the species numbers and health, as well as for the safety of fellow hunters and fishers. 

Deer hunting season dates for the entire Ogeechee River Basin: 

Archery begins on September 9 and ends on Oct. 13; Firearms begins October 24. Both end on January 15. See a full list of season dates

Proper removal of hunted animals

Did you know that dumping animal remains in a waterway does more harm than good? By throwing remains in the waterway, it can create harmful bacteria buildup that hurts humans, animals, and plants. The parts left behind are not sought after by most fish or aquatic animals, or will take too long for them to break down, causing harmful bacteria during decay. It is best to either bury the entrails and bones, or leave them on the land (away from roads) for vultures and other carrion to eat. Let’s thank nature’s garbage disposals for doing their jobs! 

More: Wild Game Processors in Georgia

“Hunters, you can help protect the Georgia deer herd from Chronic Wasting Disease (CWD), a fatal disease affecting deer. This disease has not been detected in our state and you can be instrumental in keeping it out,” says Killmaster. “Do not bring live deer, whole carcasses or heads into Georgia, know what parts you can bring back from an out-of-state hunt, and report deer with any disease symptoms. You can find more info at GeorgiaWildlife.com/cwd.”


Your dog loves venison more than you, I guarantee. Here’s a super simple and quick recipe for venison jerky for your furry friend. This will save you money on dog treats too!

David Turko, Macaulay Library

Other Important Dates:

Not sure if it’s for you but want to give hunting or fishing a try? September 23 is National Hunting and Fishing Day (no license required)!

Deer hunting season for the entire Ogeechee River Basin:
Archery: Begins September 9.
Firearms: Begins October 24.
Both end on January 15.

Submit your photos and stories of responsible sportsmanship to info@ogeecheeriverkeeper.org or tag us on social media.

Flower Power


In our area, late spring and early summer is the perfect time to watch the transition of the seasons and all the blooms that change along with it. The adjustments in temperature and rainfall affects when certain plant species bloom and bear fruit. The seasons prompt gardeners and farmers to plant new crops, and they stimulate new flowers and fruits to bloom. 

Alter your perspective on these changes by taking photos of the same plants each day. Watch how time passes when you review your images.

You can do this in your backyard, a neighborhood greenspace or venture out to new place. A smartphone camera works just as well as a professional camera. Play around with the natural light at different times of the day, different cloud cover, or just after a rain when the petals and leaves are still wet. Use natural lighting, test the macro settings, and capture the smells and sights of different flower blooms!

Earth Month Pledge

The month of April is known for Earth Day. This year, ORK challenges everyone to make a pledge for the month of April and complete a service project that benefits the environment. 

Stick with one type of service or do several things. Get creative! Here are some suggestions:

  • Litter cleanups on public land or in your neighborhood
  • Plant a pollinator garden at home, school, or work
  • Start a Sustainability Club at school or work
  • Only shop with reusable bags
  • Save water in your home to water your plants and keep track of how much water is saved with a pitcher or 2L bottle)
  • Only shop at thrift stores or consignment stores for clothing and household items

Bonus: If you are located within the Ogeechee River watershed, ORK can provide volunteer credit for service. Provide the following: location of service, photos of service, and total volunteer hours for April in order to receive credit. Send it to info@ogeecheeriverkeeper.org.