Watersheds are our source of water. The vast silent highways of river and streams, both above and beneath the ground, flowing through lakes, ponds and aquifers, and eventually to the sea, provide water for all living things. Each watershed is structured and bounded by its own geological and geographical features. While the water in a watershed is predictable, it is not limitless and it is not static. As environments change, so do watersheds. What was an abundant water source today might not be tomorrow. A watershed is a powerful yet fragile webbing of water.

The Nimishillen Watershed is our local watershed in Stark County, Ohio. It drains 118,000 acres (184 square miles) of land. Its three main rivers serve almost 400,000 people. Yet most people are not aware of this vast stretch of land and water or the important part it plays in their everyday lives. Water, shelter, food, nesting sites, incubators, nurseries, courting and mating sites – these are some of the many roles that the watershed plays for its biological inhabitants, the humans, other animals, and plants that live within it.

Watersheds like the Nimishillen are threatened by encroachment of humans on vital habitats, by pollution, development, loss of key species that serve important roles in watershed communities, and loss of major habitats within the watershed area. Funded by the Herbert W. Hoover Foundation, the Kent State University at Stark created a documentary film which focuses on the watershed and a small set of biological ecology researchers who are gathering information that is crucial to understanding and preserving our water resources.

Click on video below to watch Hoover Watershed Water Web Feature