The health of Coyote Creek is diminishing due to a variety of factors: pollution, water quality, invasive species, man-made barriers. However, there is hope to restore the creek.
Pollution comes from a variety of sources. Homeless encampments leave human waste and trash that literally choke the life out of the creek.
Inadequate water flow is one of the greatest issues related to the health of the creek. Due to the low flows, the temperatures of the water increase, thereby diminishing the ability for the fish to reproduce. Additionally, barriers to fish passage, such as culverts and percolation ponds, continue to be major inhibitors to a healthy fishery.
The Department of Fish and Game has cited toxicity levels that are unsustainable for the health of aquatic life. The main organizations responsible for the cleanup are the cities, including the City of San Jose with its large homeless population, County of Santa Clara, and the Santa Clara Valley Water District, which releases water from the dams.
And, even if our native steelhead trout managed to get by the homeless camps and through the trash, they would run into Singleton Road crossing south of Capitol Expressway. The fish can simply not get by this road crossing and can’t go upstream to the places where they can safely spawn and rear their young.
The creek needs a voice, and that is where you come in. By attending community meetings and writing representatives, you can advocate for the health of this creek.