Los Altos is in the Lower Peninsula Watershed, a 98-square-mile area whose creeks feed into the San Francisco Bay. Four creeks span Los Altos, running from the foothills into the bay. Of these, Adobe Creek forms a boundary between Palo Alto and Los Altos; Stevens Creek forms a boundary between Los Altos and Sunnyvale; and Permanente Creek and Hale Creek merge at the border between Los Altos and Mountain View. The Santa Clara Valley Water District is responsible for protecting streams and watersheds and for flood control in the region.
These creeks are hosts to numerous native species, including ducks, egrets, heron, owls, fish, salamanders, and raccoons.
Living near a creek is also a responsibility. There are a number of guidelines and requirements  of which you should be aware when working near our creeks. Recommended practices for preserving the environment when landscaping near creeks and other helpful hints for creek-side residents can also be found through the Santa Clara Valley Water District.
When landscaping near creeks, it is important to keep invasive plant species out to preserve the riparian environment. Further resources and links to lists of invasive plants that should be avoided particularly in riparian corridors can also be found on our native plant page .