Cave formations are delicate and easily destroyed. This is why cavers are so concerned about the welfare of caves and often secretive about their locations. Not only are the formations beautiful and delicate, but the cave life — bats, fish, salamanders — also live a fragile existence. Cavers respect the formations and the animals in caves.
The Cleveland Grotto is known (and has won national awards) for its efforts in cave conservation. We are involved in on-going cave clean-up and conservation projects in West Virginia and Kentucky.
Education is an important cornerstone of the Cleveland Grotto’s activities. In addition to our library of cave-related materials, our newsletters, meetings, and outings are an important way for us to share information on caving, cave safety, and other relevant topics.
Grotto members are also active in the community with educational programs on the principles of caving, cave conservation, and cave safety, with such organizations as the Cleveland Museum of Natural History, The Great Lakes Science Center, and youth groups.
The Cleveland Grotto is known for its support of cave science, through its Science Fund. This endowment issues annual small grants for cave-related research and projects. The Fund has supported hydrology studies, speleothem analysis for climate research, and the publication of the discovery of a new cave isopod species, amongst other grants. For more information, including how to apply, see the Science Fund page.