Raleigh Trash Trout get first clean-out

Preston Ross III, of The Great Raleigh Cleanup, wades into Little Rock Creek to help clean out NORA, the Raleigh Trash Trout.

Sound Rivers’ newest Trash Trout got its first clean-out last Friday. Volunteers from the Walnut Creek Wetland Center, students of ecological restoration engineer Dr. Barbara Doll with N.C. State University and members of the The Great Raleigh Cleanup joined Neuse Riverkeeper Samantha Krop at Little Rock Creek to pull trash captured by the Trash Trout and “audit” the contents.

Members of the Neighborhood Ecology Corps, an environmental club of middle-school children based out of the Walnut Creek Wetland Center, have affectionately named the Little Rock Creek Trash Trout NORA, which stands for “No Refuse Advances.”

Sam said she and volunteers pulled quite a bit of trash from NORA, and described it as the standard stuff you see floating in the waterways: plastic bottles, Styrofoam and takeout wrappers and containers. One interesting find, however, was a Carmex lip balm with a googly eye attached.

Trash Trouts prevent trash from flowing downstream and are being used to gather data for “Improving Human and Ecosystem Health through Microplastic Reduction,” an ongoing research study of how plastic pollution affects the environment as large pieces of plastic (macroplastics) break down into tiny pieces of plastic (microplastics).

Sound Rivers currently has two additional Trash Trouts installed on Jack’s Creek in Washington and Duffyfield Canal in New Bern. The Raleigh Trash Trout is sponsored by Mid Atlantic Fabrication and Triangle Fly Fishers.