Lots of Changes to Thornton Creek

NE Seattle has 1 of Seattle’s 4 salmon-bearing streams flowing through it, Thornton Creek.  The stream, who’s headwaters is the Ronald Bog in Shoreline at N 175th Street, flows through a highly modified system that had been increasingly encroached upon by construction of I-5 and Seattle’s northward expansion, as it makes its way to its confluence with Lake Washington at Matthews Beach.  However, its ever-encroached upon fate has been changing for Thornton Creek in the relatively recent.  Many local groups (e.g,. Thornton Creek Alliance), regulatory agencies, and City departments have begun efforts to restore the stream and its hydrograph, improve water quality, and rehabilitate the riparian and in-stream habitat for salmon.

Recently, there has been lots of positive news for those who love Thornton Creek.

While these projects should improve the habitat and natural conditions for the Thornton Creek system, the news isn’t all good.   Small, invasive New Zealand mud snails, which can indeed do significant damage, have recently been found near the mouth of the creek.

There’s lots of work still needed to restore this beautiful urban stream.  Much positive work is ongoing, although you can help in many different ways by being mindful of what you put on your yard or wash down the street’s storm drain.  You can also become active in local stewardship groups like the Thornton Creek Alliance, Friends of Thornton Creek Park #1, or GreenSeattle.

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