The Tadpole Project works to protect and restore the Marsh Fork of the Big Coal River. The 28-mile Marsh Fork tributary of the Big Coal River flows in the valley between Coal River Mountain and Cherry Pond Mountain in western Raleigh County. The Marsh Fork, and the numerous creeks running into it, suffer from years of neglect and build-up of garbage and scrap metal. Our goal is to foster community pride by getting community members involved in the restoration of our river and bringing awareness to the natural beauty of our area. We organize clean-up days along the river and its creeks and local cemeteries, go door-to-door talking to people who live along the river, and engage local youth and visiting student groups to help with the clean up.
Ultimately, the Tadpole Project hopes to expand to involve the community in other aspects of watershed protection. Coal mines, coal processing plants, mountaintop removal sites, gas wells, timbering, and personal waste waters all affect the health of our waterway. These concerns all need to be addressed in order to have a healthy Marsh Fork watershed. Our goal is to map out a watershed plan which would address all the sources and causes of stream impairment in the Marsh Fork tributary and to engage local residents in stream monitoring and water testing to involve them in protecting the health of our river.