The Cahaba River

300.jpgThe Cahaba is no ordinary river! It currently supports 64 rare and imperiled plant and animal species, 13 of which are found nowhere else in the world. It is also home to 131 fish species, a greater number per mile than any other river in North America. The river has another unique feature--its rock shoals. These shoals create small pools that provide habitats for many rare plant and animal species. The shoals (Cahaba) lilies, which bloom from mid-May to mid-June, create a truly breath-taking scene on the river.

Starting atop the 1,500-foot Cahaba Mountain in St. Clair County, the river runs for almost 200 miles to where it joins the Alabama River in Dallas County southwest of Selma. Along the way, it winds through Trussville, Birmingham, Centreville, and Marion. The Cahaba is Alabama's longest free-flowing stream, and it provides 53 million gallons of water a day to nearly one million Alabamians.

The river ends at Old Cahawba, the site of Alabama's first state capitol along the Alabama River. The Cahaba River (earlier spelling of Cahawba) is thought to be of Choctaw origin meaning "water above" or "the river above." For more information about the river, visit

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Bibb County Lake

Cahaba River National Wildlife Refuge

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