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Annual Stream Cleaning

Each summer, the City of Duluth Stormwater Utility tackles the on-going effort to maintain the 42 streams flowing through the City.

A team lead by a Utility Operations employee and composed of youth employed through the YES (Youth Employment Services) walks the local streams removing debris and garbage and identifying problems such as questionable discharges or broken pipes along the streams.


Secret Wilderness
Despite the garbage, the creeks remain secret wildernesses within the City. The young cleaning crews have seen fawn not more than two weeks old, lots of deer, bears and lots of bear droppings, many eagles and hawks, and signs of other residential small animals. Even the small streams have fishes - minnows in the 1 to 3 inch range. In larger streams the crew has seen trout and throughout the streams a healthy population of crayfish.

The creeks host a variety of vegetation. Flowers boarder the creeks and in the still ponds the crews have found blooming water lilies.

The young people enjoy the adventure of exploring a wilderness within the City and also acquire an increased awareness of the potential humans have to destroy these environments.

Youth Employment Services have found tires and a variety of other items in Duluth Streams including:

   • tape recorders
   • shopping carts
   • pop cans
   • suit cases
   • old bus seats
   • crib matresses
   • full bags of garbage
   • lawn debris