Creek Cleanup Benefits Zoo Animals


Arjun Chhabra, Staff Writer

The Marine Science Club participated in the Arroyo Viejo Creek cleanup on the weekend of May 18. Students spent the day removing trash and invasive species from the creek, then took a trip to the Oakland Zoo, which sponsored the event.

According to club member junior Ava Sparacio, the zoo makes use of the plants they pull from the creek. “They collect the milk thistle that we take and give it to giraffes because giraffes need it,” she said. The plant is beneficial for the animals’ liver and cholesterol levels.

Marine Science club member and Officer of Sustainability junior Alexandra Yokomizo added, “We did this so that other native species could actually grow and thrive where they are meant to be. The invasive species was causing the native plants to die which ruins the balance of the ecosystem.”

Yokomizo was especially excited for the cleanup. “I am really passionate about it because I love native California species in particular, but I just wanted to educate the other students at Campolindo about that. I thought it was a fun way for everyone to get hands-on and work on it.”

Club member senior Andrew Price advocates for students helping the environment and their community. Price said, “You can sit in a classroom and talk about nature all you want but actually going out and seeing animals or getting involved in a service project or clean-up like this is so much more fulfilling.”

The Oakland Zoo runs these cleanups every 3rd Saturday of the month, which is open for all to sign up and volunteer. Every volunteer is granted free admissions to the Zoo for the remainder of the day, after they participate in the creek clean-up.