Wildlife returns to rehabilitated Colgan Creek

Santa Rosa officials celebrated the completion of the first phase of the ambitious restoration of Colgan Creek on Thursday with a tour of the newly widened waterway.
The majority of work on the half-mile section of creek just east of Elsie Allen High School wrapped up last fall, with workers widening and reshaping the channel to increase its flood capacity, restore a more natural course and improve the riparian habitat.
The channel will now be able to handle a 100-year-flood instead of the 25-year event for which it was designed, city environmental specialist Sean McNeil explained to dozens of people who turned out for the event.
Wildlife already is returning to the creek. Western pond turtles were discovered in the area soon after major work completed last fall, said Steve Brady, a city’s environmental specialist. And a green heron was spotted Thursday hunting near one of the few remaining pools that haven’t yet dried up this summer.
Colgan Creek long has run dry in the summer, and the project won’t change that.
“This is not going to be a steelhead creek,” McNeil said.But it will create a more natural environment for a variety of wildlife, including winter habitat for fish species moving up from the Laguna de Santa Rosa, he said.
Read more at: Santa Rosa officials show off rehabilitated Colgan Creek | The Press Democrat

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