Welcome to the Hunnicutt Creek website! Here, you will be informed of the current status, ongoing events, past and present research, and other topics directly related to Hunnicutt Creek and its watershed.
Nestled in the beautiful city of Clemson, South Carolina, Hunnicutt Creek offers a harmonious blend of nature, culture, and academic excellence. Explore the different aspects of our research to better understand the importance of stream restoration projects!
Below are the major topics covered throughout this webpage. Explore the different aspects of our research to better understand the importance of stream restoration projects!
Who We Are
Student-led Conservation Initiatives
Clemson University students play a pivotal role in conservation and ecological initiatives, with hands-on involvement in projects ranging from stream restoration to invasive species removal, and from macroinvertebrates monitoring to amphibian studies. Their work, driven by dedication and curiosity, significantly contributes to maintaining a healthy local ecosystem. Curious about the young environmental leaders transforming our world one project at a time? Click below to learn more about their remarkable work at Hunnicutt Creek and beyond
What We Do
Invasive Species Control
Where We Are
Location & Description
Hunnicutt Creek runs through the Clemson University campus and the South Carolina Botanical Garden (SCBG), draining water into the old Seneca River channel, now known as the Calhoun Field Laboratory or the ‘Clemson Bottoms’. Since the completion of the construction of Lake Hartwell in 1959, this low-lying area on the western edge of the Clemson University campus is the location of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) pump station, which sends Hunnicutt Creek’s entire flow through the dike and into the lake. The USACE’s control over the bottom of Hunnicutt Creek makes the watershed an unusual system.
The Baruch Institute of Coastal Ecology and Forest Science is located on the Hobcaw Barony, a 16,000 acre tract of undeveloped land along the Waccamaw Neck. The facilities at Baruch provides Clemson with unique research opportunities in a coastal environment with high salinity estuary marshes, brackish water, and freshwater swamps. Topics of research deal with issues such as environmental impacts for changing land use patterns, coastal resource conservation, maintaining water quality, and forest and watershed management. The researchers provide information about these studies to the public and policy makers to aid in making decisions about land use and urban growth.
Topography and Area Map
The Coastal Research and Education Center (REC) conducts applied research, education and public service programs on vegetable and specialty crops. The center includes 325 acres in addition to laboratories in the Department of Agriculture U.S. Vegetable Laboratory building. The REC conducts research to increase production and handling technology for the vegetable industry and dissemination of information through extension activities. In cooperation with the Clemson University Extension Service, local problem solving and grower educational programs receive major emphasis. With the population increasing in the U.S. and especially in the ‘Sunbelt”, the REC is supporting the SC vegetable industry to capture a greater share of the market by utilizing innovating production , postharvest methodology and effective pest management systems that include biological control and pest-resistant plants.
Walker Golf Course
The green watershed area encompasses the SCBG on the east, moves into the Walker Golf Course and terminates in the Clemson Bottoms. The headwaters of this watershed start off-campus along U.S. Route 76 and within numerous small neighborhoods on the south side of campus.
Multiple Urban Sources
The portion of the Hunnicutt Creek watershed indicated by purple (North Hunnicutt Creek) begins at the water tower on Kite Hill, fire station and the south side of Douthit Hills running between Thornhill Village and Calhoun Courts. It continues draining runoff from campus residences, large parking areas, buildings and multiple other sources.
The Hunnicutt Creek watershed in the yellow area is primarily piped underground through the core of campus. It then daylights south of Strom Thurmond Institute into Suber Pond.
Hunnicutt Creek undergoes many changes directly related to each of the smaller watershed’s characteristics. Vegetative cover in the headwaters near the botanical garden (green area) offer both aquatic and terrestrial diversity. Stream flow is typically stable but can be elevated during large storm events.
North Hunnicutt Creek watershed exemplifies a typical urban system. It can be characterized by very low baseflow conditions and very high stormflow conditions. An overstory of hardwood species can be found in this area. Due to in-stream conditions (high storm flows and channel instability) and terrestrial invasive species this area does not portray the same diversity as that found in the botanical garden watershed.
Hidden in a Pipe
The relative amount of impervious surface and the fact that the majority of the smallest contributing watershed is piped and then ponded makes this portion of Hunnicutt Creek very unique. Very little aquatic life can be found in this section of the creek as it discharges into a very landscaped section of the Clemson University campus.