Bull Creek District Park - Environmental Features Hike

Published 12 February 2020

Bull Creek District Park, the anchor for the Upper and Lower Bull Creek Greenbelts, is one of Austin’s most popular parks. Beloved for its beautiful limestone outcroppings, springs, and cascading creek, this 47-acre park offers numerous recreational opportunities, including hiking.

To help enhance a visit to this park, we’d like to point out a few of the special environmental features that you might see.  This includes some Critical Environmental Features (CEFs), such as springs and cliffs, which are protected from development by the City’s Land Development Code.

East Austin's Subtle Springs

Published 14 November 2018

You’re probably familiar with Barton Springs Pool in Zilker Park, a popular destination for swimming, relaxing, and cooling off on a hot summer day. And, you might be familiar with some of the other west Austin springs that are scenic destinations to visit on foot or by boat. But, did you know there are HUNDREDS of other springs in our city, many of which are located in east Austin?

Restoring Eliza Spring’s Stream

Published 8 August 2018

Click here to watch the video!

In Zilker Park, near Barton Springs’ north gate and the Zilker Zephyr train station, you’ll see one of Austin’s environmental treasures – Eliza Spring.  To see the spring, look inside the historical, sunken, fenced-off amphitheater.

Blackland Prairie Study In East Travis County

Published 13 June 2018

For many years, the City of Austin’s Watershed Protection Department (WPD) has studied trees and other vegetation that grow along local creeks. These vegetated areas along the water are called “riparian buffers,” and they benefit our creeks and river by improving water quality and preventing erosion. Most of WPD’s riparian buffer studies have been in central and west Austin; however, a recent study took place in far eastern Travis County, around and east of U.S. 183. This area, located in the Blackland Prairie region, has deep, fertile soils and is mostly agricultural.

Lady Bird Lake: Fiction or Fact?

Published 21 March 2018

Austin, Texas Skyline.

Town Lake... Lady Bird Lake... the Colorado River. Whatever you call it, Austin wouldn't be the same without the scenic body of water separating North and South Austin.

Austin Field Guides to Aquatic Plants and Wildlife

Published 21 December 2017

Our city is built within a natural environment full of amazing plant and wildlife species. Below is a list of 10 field guides we developed to help nature lovers and explorers, gardeners, anglers, and others identify some of the plant and animal species found in Austin’s creeks, lakes and parks.

Gooey! Slimy! Colorful! What can it possibly be?

Published 23 May 2017

Our Department gets calls from concerned community members about unusual colors seen in creeks. Some of these vibrant colors are natural, so here’s a quick guide to help identify some of the possible sources that cause these unusual sights.