There are many ways you can help keep Missouri streams healthy and beautiful. Here are just a few:
Litter pickups are the most popular activity Stream Teams participate in. Litter pickups can range in scale from cleaning up the stream in your back yard to highly coordinated large-scale watershed-wide events. Here are a few documents to help you on your way.
Big River Cleanup Manual by Missouri River Relief
Storm Drain Stenciling
Storm drains are sometimes misused for disposal of paint, motor oil, and even yard waste. People are not aware they lead to near-by lakes, streams, rivers, or even sinkholes which are direct conduits to groundwater. Stream Teams around the state are organizing storm drain stenciling and community education programs. The stenciled message, "Dump No Waste, Drains to Stream," provides a visible reminder of the consequences of improper waste disposal in storm drains.
Trees growing along streams provide many benefits for humans, wildlife, fish, and the stream itself. Whether you are interested in reducing erosion and sedimentation, providing wildlife and fish habitat, or the occasional harvest of timber, allowing trees to grow near streams has many benefits.
As a Stream Team, you are eligible to receive trees for your stream projects at no charge through the Missouri Department of Conservation State Nursery. Orders are accepted November 1 - April 15 each year.
If your adopted stream could benefit from some tree planting, here is what you need to do:
1. Plan your project and determine the tree species you need. Choose trees that do well next to a stream. Call us at 800/781-1989
(voicemail) if you need advice.
2. Get permission from landowners along your adopted stream.
3. Obtain a tree order form. Call the nursery at 573/674-3229 or 800/781-1989 (voicemail) or visit the MDC website at
mdc.mo.gov/trees-plants/tree-seedlings/order-seedlings to order electronically. If you ordered trees last year, you will automatically
receive an order form this year.
4. THIS IS IMPORTANT! Make sure to incorporate your Stream Team number into your address; otherwise you will be charged for your
order. (Example: Stream Team 100, Johnny Appleseed, 123 Oak Lane, Tree City, MO 65432.)
5. Stream Teams should send their tree orders to us, and we will forward them to the nursery. Mail to:
MISSOURI STREAM TEAM
PO BOX 180
JEFFERSON CITY, MO 65102-0180
Please do not submit multiple orders. If you need to add trees to an existing order, call the nursery at 573/674-3229. Place your order
as early as possible to assure best availability and variety!
6. Follow the instructions included with your trees to ensure their survival.
7. Please submit a Stream Team ACTIVITY REPORT about your project. We NEED to tally your accomplishments!
REMEMBER, these free trees are only available for Stream Team projects.
Adopt-An-Access provides opportunities for groups and individuals to adopt Missouri stream and lake accesses. It's a great way to provide a valuable community service and to develop cooperative relationships with agencies that are responsible for maintaining the accesses. We all benefit from reduced agency costs for maintenance; cleaner, safer accesses; and increased interaction between agencies and the surrounding community.
Frequently Asked Questions about the Adopt-An-Access Program.
How do I get started?
You can find information about Missouri Department of Conservation (MDC) accesses at the MDC Atlas Website. Please contact the appropriate Regional Office, Area Manager, or Stream Team coordinator to talk about a possible adoption. Coordinators Map
The Adoption Agreement offers several options for providing maintenance at the access. The agreement offers flexibility for the adopter and the area manager to arrive at conditions that are mutually beneficial. The Area Manager will be happy to meet with you to discuss these options and determine the extent to which you are able to participate. If the adopter is a group, it's important that the person who will be the primary contact with the Area Manager participate in the discussion.
What are some of the benefits?
Adopters automatically become Stream Teams, unless they elect not to when completing the adoption agreement. As a Stream Team, you become eligible for numerous additional benefits. Teams can receive a wide variety of incentive items, including T-shirts, bandanas, pens, pencils, patches, and more. Supplies for litter pickups, storm drain stenciling, and other activities are also provided. Training and equipment is provided for Teams interested in Water Quality Monitoring. Other workshops are frequently offered, including Tree Planting, Law and Advocacy, Understanding Streams, Fish and Crayfish Identification, and Conducting Litter Pickups.
Already an Adopter?
Find out how to renew your agreement here: Renew an AAA Agreement
A tree revetment, made by anchoring trees along a streambank, is an inexpensive, effective way of stopping streambank erosion. The trees greatly slow the current along the eroding bank; this decreases erosion and allows silt and sand to be deposited along the bank and within the tree branches. The deposited material forms a good seed bed in which the seeds of river trees such as cottonwood and sycamore can sprout and grow. The resulting trees spread roots throughout the revetment and streambank. By the time the revetment trees have decayed, the bank should be stabilized by the roots of the living trees. As an added benefit, tree revetments provide excellent fish and wildlife cover.
Volunteer Water Quality Monitoring
The Volunteer Water Quality Monitoring (VWQM) Program is an opportunity for citizens to learn about water quality and get involved in one of Missouri Stream Team's most popular activities. The program provides each volunteer with training and equipment for monitoring the physical, biological and chemical parameters of Missouri's rivers and streams.
Monofilament Recycling Recovery Program
Used fishing line poses a hazard to people, wildlife, and the environment. Berkeley Pure Fishing recycles used monofilament fishing line and turns it into underwater fish structures, tackle boxes, and other fishing related items. The Stream Team Program partnered with Berkeley in the fall of 2005 to recycle used fishing line. The Stream Team Program has recycling bins available for Stream Team members who have the passion and the commitment to become an MRRP monitor.
In order to keep track of bins that will be located throughout the state, the Stream Team Program will need a volunteer agreement to help us keep accurate records and to be sure you understand the obligation you are accepting regarding the MRRP sites you maintain.
What it takes to get involved in this important program:
1. Obtain permission from the Area Manager of any MDC Accesses, Parks and Recreation Superintendent for city lakes or accesses,
private land owners, or any entity with the authority to allow the installation of a bin on the property in order to establish an outdoor
2. Completely fill out and return the Missouri Volunteer Agreement and indicate how many bins you want.
3. Maintain the bin by emptying it one or two times a month (or more often if needed, especially during peak fishing seasons).
4. Complete an Activity Report each time the bin is emptied. Activity Reports are available in every issue of our Channels newsletter,
online, or hard copies can be mailed to you upon request. Send completed Activity Reports to: Missouri Stream Team, PO Box 180,
Jefferson City, MO 65102-0180.
5. Mail collected and cleaned (remove vegetation, lead, hooks, debris, etc.) monofilament line only to: Berkley Recycling, 1900 18th
Street, Spirit Lake, IA 51360-1041, or find an MRRP indoor receptacle/mailing box at a participating fishing and sporting goods store in
Education Projects for Teachers
The Missouri Stream Team provides educators with staff support and resources needed to incorporate water quality instruction into their curriculum, lesson plans, field labs and assessment strategies. This webpage allows teachers and educators the opportunity to explore and experience the variety of educational resources available to implement water quality and nature curriculum into their science classrooms. If you have educational materials that you would like to share with teachers and educators please email an electronic copy in either a word document or PDF format and the Stream Team staff will post your submission. Please align your lesson to either the GLEs (Grade Level Expectations) or the NGSS (Next Generation Science Standards) if you submit a resource.
Please email submissions to Jenna.Stiek@mdc.mo.gov
Submitted Lesson Plans
Joel Rademeyer, Team 1634 - Parkway Middle School - Value of Water
Mary Ann Mutrux, Team 451 - Willow Springs Middle School - Hellbenders
Stream Team Academy Workshops
We have developed other training sessions (Stream Team Academy) for our volunteers. These were developed to enhance the volunteers’ understanding of stream ecosystems.
Fly Fishing for Invert Nuts
Stream Team Curriculum Workshop
Understanding Streams Workshop (discusses hydrology/stream dynamics, etc.)
Water and the Law
How to Build a Plywood Canoe Workshop
Almost all of our training sessions are limited to one day. The exceptions are the Understanding Streams and Herpetology Academy classes (3 days and 2 days, respectively).
Stream Team Academy workshops are offered on an intermittent basis to registered Stream Team members at various locations as time, venues, and instructors are available. Registration information will be sent by Streamgram when these workshops are offered.
Please contact us if you have any questions:
Stream Team voice mailbox: 800-781-1989
Stream Team Mentoring
Stream Team Mentoring is an activity that can help a new Stream Team get their feet wet (literally!) and help them to meet other Teams in their area. A mentor is someone who takes a special interest in helping another person or group develop successfully by providing them with guidance and support.
Photo Point Monitoring
Photographing your stream is a basic monitoring technique anyone can participate in. While photographs cannot tell the entire story about a situation, project, or practice, much information can be gathered from photographs taken at the same point over a number of years.
With over 30 different types of activities to participate in, there is something for everyone in the Stream Team Program!