How to Volunteer
Creeks Master Plan
Wildlife in the Creeks
Otters and Beavers
Annual Creek Cleanup
Thank you to all our cleanup volunteers!Over
150 people attended the 28th annual downtown Walnut Creek creek cleanup
on May 13. We collected 16 cubic yards of debris. Two-thirds of
it was habitat restoration-related, and the rest was trash. Some
Most ironic: a kitchen sink stopper
Most poignant: an aluminum crutch
we found more sleeping bags and suitcases full of clothes than ever
before. It looks as if the homeless were caught by the winter
storms and lost some valuable possessions.
More photos from the cleanup will be available soon. Meanwhile, enjoy the one on the right.
Photos of the 2016 creek cleanup are available here.
Creek Restoration Project Continues in Civic Park June 10
We are transforming a weedy area of creek bank in Civic Park into a meadow of wildflowers and native grasses. Join us for some rewarding work, camaraderie, and sometimes a
brief talk about an aspect of creek ecology. No
experience is required -- just a desire to make the creek a better
for both humans and wildlife.
our Saturday, June 10 workday, we'll sheet mulch next year's restoration area. Join us if you want to learn how to do it!
For more information about workdays
To sign up, contact us.
Photos of past restoration days
Restoration workday: Sat Jun 10 from 9:00am-noon
Restoration days monthly on the 2nd Saturday
Community Service Day, Sat Oct 14, 8:45am
2018 Annual Creek Cleanup: Sat May 12, 8:45am
To sign up, contact us.
Community Service Day Projects
Friends of the Creeks sponsored two projects on
Community Service Day in 2016 -- a cleanup on Pine Creek, and for
the more restoration minded, ivy removal in San Ramon Creek near
Creekside Drive downtown. The Flood Control District sponsored a second Pine Creek cleanup.
Investigating Fish Habitat
As part of our ongoing project to learn more about the
fish in our creeks -- both what species we have and where they live --
we asked Gretchen Hayes, a geomorphologist, to teach us how to do
pebble counts. This is a technique for assessing the quality of gravel
beds for suitability as redds (the nests salmon build to lay their
eggs). After locating a promising spot, we laid out a
grid, took a sample pebble from each intersection, and measured and
recorded it to get a histogram of gravel sizes. We found that we had more fine gravel than is optimal.
Other Recent Activities
Creek Cleanup for the Salmon: Since salmon need clean water both to live in and
reproduce, we cleaned up an area of
Walnut Creek where salmon usually come to spawn. Because of the
homeless camps nearby, there were a lot of large objects like grocery
carts, old clothing, and luggage, along with a lot of cigarette butts
and fragments of packaging. We didn't see a single plastic bag,
however. We were not able to remove all the trash, but it's a lot
cleaner than it was and we'll return next year.
an experiment, we used sandbags to divert all the flow of San Ramon
Creek from the bypass into the natural channel during the dry season to
see whether it
made a difference in the water temperature. There wasn't enough
extra water to make a difference, but we'll try again early next summer
when there is more water (and more baby fish).
A group removed arundo from a stretch of creek bank below the Creekwalk
in Civic Park East on August 14. A second group worked on Las Trampas Creek in September. Slowly but surely, we are making
progress against this invasive weed.
Crew 5 poses with the trash from their area. It's a fine collection, even though the lawn chair they found is missing.
Volunteers pause after planting pipevines, the sole food of pipevine swallowtail butterfly caterpillers.
Ivy removal volunteers in San Ramon Creek on Community Service Day 2016
The volunteer on the left is measuring a pebble, while the one on the right is reaching into the water to select one.
Volunteers cleaned up the creek for the salmon on October 29.
Placing sandbags in the bypass channel to divert the flow into the natural channel, August 2016
Volunteers cutting arundo below the Creekwalk