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The Coosa River Basin makes up a significant portion of the corner of northwest Georgia and is the biggest hotspot of aquatic biodiversity in the state. It also has the most imperiled species of any Georgia river basin, due to the combined effects of hydroelectric dams, agriculture and urban development. The river’s name comes from the Coosa chiefdom, one of the most powerful Muscogeean groups prior to European colonization. In 2010, American Rivers named the Coosa the tenth-most endangered river in the U.S. due to development. Continue exploring the Coosa below.

Photo by Alan Cressler via Flickr. 

Echinacea purpurea or the Eastern Purple Coneflower is a rare (but not federally protected) species. Location: Coosa Valley Prairies, Floyd County, Georgia.


Learn more about individual conservation efforts in the Coosa river basin:


Read about the Coosa Basin on The Nature Conservancy’s “Places We Protect” page.

Learn about the EPD’s Fish Consumption Advisories online in the Guidelines for Eating Fish from Georgia’s Waters.

Photo by Alan Cressler via Flickr. Location: Etowah River, Bartow County, Georgia.


Some of the most popular hiking spots in Georgia lie in the Coosa basin: Amicalola FallsFort Mountain State Park, and more. If you like paddling, try the Etowah River Water Trail!

Other parks and recreation areas: James H. Floyd State ParkRed Top Mountain State ParkConasauga Snorkel Hole.

Photo by Alan Cressler via Flickr. Location: Amicalola Creek, Dawson Forest Wildlife Management Area, Goethe Tract, Dawson County, Georgia.


Learn more about the Coosa, along with Georgia’s other amazing rivers, at Georgia Rivers.

See Explore Georgia’s resources for recreation and visits, including those on the Conasauga River.

Tour New Echota State Historic Site to learn about the cultural and historic legacy of the Cherokee People of the region.

Read about the Coosa River and where to fish at Outdoor Alabama.

Check out Awwareness, the official newsletter of Alabama Water Watch, and their resources on the Coosa River Basin.

Explore Georgia State-Protected species by watershed at the Georgia Biodiversity Portal.

Map of the Coosa River Basin. Created by Anna Baynes (UGA River Basin Center).