Harford Streams
Green Choices. Healthy Streams.

What’s New?

COMING SOON - Courthouse Rain Garden at Mary Risteau Office Building  

For more information visit - Courthouse Rain Garden

Courthouse Rain Garden with bleed Page 001

Courthouse Rain Garden with bleed Page 002

Elbow Brook - Tributary to Winters Run


What is Harford Streams? 

Harford Streams is a program developed and implemented by Harford County Department of Public Works, Watershed Protection and Restoration Office. Our mission is to improve the health of the streams, rivers, lakes and estuaries located in Harford County.

Plumtree Run - Tributary to Winters Run


Why is stream health important? 

Clean water is vital to all living things. It is the earth's most valuable resource. Allowing pollution to run off the landscape and into the streams contaminates the drinking water for all living things including people.

Water exists in many different forms including ice in glaciers, liquid in oceans, wetlands, streams, and aquifers, and gas or water vapor in the air. These different forms of water make up the water cycle. Water can transform from one form to another but it is impossible to create "new" water.

For more information, visit Introduction to Streams.

How are streams and watersheds related? 

A watershed is an area of land that drains to a stream, creek, river, lake or estuary. Every piece of land in Harford County ultimately drains into the Chesapeake Bay, but can travel through many different streams before reaching the Bay.

For more information, visit Introduction to Streams.

Measuring stream health through identification of fish populations


How is stream health measured? 

The health of a stream can be measured in three different ways including (1) the types and quantities of fish and aquatic insects, (2) the types and quantities of chemicals in the water, and (3) the measurement of changes in the shape of the stream.

For more information, visit the following MD Department of Natural Resources sites Maryland Stream Health, Eyes on the Bay, and Water Monitoring Council.

How do my activities affect stream health? 

We impact each watershed in which we live, work and play.  Each time it rains, everything on the ground becomes part of the stormwater runoff entering into our local streams.  Some things we may leave on the ground that impacts stream health include pet waste, fertilizer not swept off sidewalks, and leaky fluids from cars.

For more information, visit Get Involved (Residents).

Building a residential raingarden


What can I do to improve stream health? 

Whatever amount of time and /or money you are willing to invest, you can help improve the health of our local streams.  From something as simple as sweeping the fertilizer off your sidewalk into the grass to constructing your own rain garden to joining the Watershed Stewards Academy. There is something that each of us can afford to do.

For more information, visit Get Involved (Residents).

Pond Retrofit - Tollgate and Wheel Road


What is Harford Streams doing to improve stream health? 

Harford Streams constructs restoration projects to improve stream health. Projects include upgrading existing stormwater management ponds (see picture above), installing new stormwater management structures, and restoring streams. The projects are typically identified through stream studies but can be identified through recommendations from residents.

For more information, visit Stream Studies and Restoration Projects.

Watershed Protection and Restoration Office

212 South Bond Street, 1st Floor
Bel Air, MD  21014
(410) 638-3217


Christine Buckley

Program Manager

Nick Jenkins

Capital Project Manager

Michele Dobson

Water Quality Monitoring Specialist

Laura Coste

Outreach Coordinator