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Tomhannock Creek

The Tomhannock Creek watershed is made up of the lands draining into the Tomhannock Creek and its tributaries, Otter, Sunkauissia, and Indian Creeks. Tomhannock Creek enters the Hoosic River in the Town of Schaghticoke, and the watershed extends upstream to the northwest escarpment of the Rensselaer Plateau, around Babcock Lake and just north of Grafton Lakes State Park.

This watershed contains the most important surface water source in Rensselaer County, the Tomhannock Reservoir in Pittstown. Five miles long and one‐half mile wide, the reservoir provides drinking water for more than 100,000 people in Troy, Brunswick, Schaghticoke, East Greenbush, North Greenbush, Rensselaer, Poestenkill, and Menands. The quality of the water from the Tomhannock Reservoir is good to excellent. The portion of the watershed upstream of the Tomhannock dam determines the quality of the water in the reservoir. The more fertilizers and pesticides used in the watershed, the more paved surfaces, and the more septic input, then the more chemicals flow into the reservoir and the streams feeding it. 

Many migrating ducks and geese use the Tomhannock Reservoir as a stopover site, and feeding bald eagles are often seen.

The Tomhannock Watershed includes significant cliff and talus slope habitat on the northeast escarpment of the Rensselaer Plateau; a series of tall, broad waterfalls on the Tomhannock Creek downstream of the reservoir; and Pittstown State Forest, 1155 acres of forest open for hiking, snowshoeing, cross‐country skiing, and hunting.

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