COLLEGE STATION – Blake Alldredge, a Texas AgriLife Extension Service associate in the wildlife and fisheries sciences department at Texas A&M University in College Station, has been appointed education and outreach coordinator for a new middle Trinity River project.
Alldredge began the position June 1.
Originally from Colleyville, he has a bachelor’s degree in wildlife and fisheries science and a master’s degree in water management, both from Texas A&M.
In his new role, Alldredge will be involved in the Building Partnerships for Cooperative Conservation in the Trinity River Basin project, according to Ashley Alexander, nonpoint source project manager for the Texas State Soil and Water Conservation Board.
“Blake’s main role will be to effectively communicate with stakeholders within the middle Trinity River Basin area,” Alexander said. “Some of the goals relating to this project include increasing stakeholder knowledge and understanding of watershed protection strategies and wildlife habitat conservation, plus promoting stewardship activities among the stakeholders.”
The Trinity River begins near the Texas-Oklahoma border in Archer, Clay and Montague counties and extends 512 miles, including through Dallas and Fort Worth, before finally emptying into Trinity Bay near Houston. The Trinity River watershed encompasses more than 18,000 square miles and travels through 38 Texas counties. Approximately 8 million people live in the Trinity River Basin, making it the most populated river basin in Texas.
Major activities within the watershed that affect the river include urbanization, commercial and industrial development, row-crop farming, livestock production, outdoor recreation and timber production. According to area planners, as the population served by the watershed continues to increase, municipal water use will increase too, making it even more important to evaluate how this water resource is managed to solve water quantity and quality issues.
“The Trinity River basin is a tremendously important watershed area, and Blake’s knowledge of wildlife and water conservation, plus his enthusiasm and willingness to work with the stakeholders in the middle Trinity River area, will make him a terrific asset to the project,” said Dr. Jim Cathey, AgriLife Extension wildlife ecology specialist and Alldredge’s supervisor.
“I’m passionate about wildlife and water conservation, education and management,” Alldredge said. ”Conservation is vital not only for the continued health of wildlife, but of the ecosystem as a whole. Education is the best way to ensure conservation.”
Alldredge added that he is looking forward to working with the landowners in the middle Trinity River Basin area to improve their quality of life by helping them improve the quality of their property and water resources.
The Building Partnerships for Cooperative Conservation initiative in the Trinity River Basin project is funded by the Texas State Soil and Water Conservation Board through a Clean Water Act §319(h) grant from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.