Author Results: E. FairfaxBack
EEAGER: a model that detects beaver-created wetlands in satellite and aerial imagery
Beavers are ecosystem engineers that can dramatically change the shape of the landscape and how water moves through it. They create and maintain wetland environments across North America and Eurasia in a wide variety of places, including mountains, deserts, coasts, forests, grasslands, shrublands, etc. Despite their large influence on the landscape, there are very few programs that monitor them at the landscape, regional, or continental scale. This is partially due to how much time it takes to find and identify beaver dams in satellite and aerial images. To make it easier for us to find and understand the influence of beavers at larger scales, we built a model that can automatically find beaver dams in satellite and aerial imagery. While our model is trained to find beaver dams, this type of model has promise for finding other landscape features too. The model isn’t perfect, but it is a strong starting point and will continue to improve as more people use it.
Beaver: The North American freshwater climate action plan
Rivers and streams, when fully connected to their floodplains, are naturally resilient systems that are increasingly part of the conversation on nature-based climate solutions. Reconnecting waterways to their floodplains improves water quality and quantity, supports biodiversity and sensitive species conservation, increases flood, drought and fire resiliency, and bolsters carbon sequestration. But, while the importance of river restoration is clear, beaver-based restoration—for example, strategic coexistence, relocation, and mimicry—remains an underutilized strategy despite ample data demonstrating its efficacy. Climate-driven disturbances are actively pushing streams into increasingly degraded states, and the window of opportunity for restoration will not stay open forever. Therefore, now is the perfect time to apply the science of beaver-based low-tech process-based stream restoration to support building climate resilience across the landscape. Not every stream will be a good candidate for beaver-based restoration, but we have the tools to know which ones are. Let us use them.
Beavers: A Dam Good Climate Change Solution?
A virtual panel facilitated by Beaver Trust, featuring beaver experts from Beaver Trust, Wildfowl & Wetlands Trust, Heal Rewilding, and California State University. The purpose of the panel is to educate people on the contribution that beavers make in healing nature and combatting climate change.
Simple hand-built structures can help streams survive wildfires and drought
Low-tech stream restoration gains using beaver dam mimicry gains popularity as an effective fix for ailing waterways in the American West.
Farming and Climate Change: How Beavers Can Help
The Beaver Trust presents a webinar on Climate Change effects on farming in Europe and how beavers can help mitigate some of the resultant drought and flood damage. 2021.
Climate Change Be Dammed!
An Introduction to the Role of Beavers in a Warming World. Dr. Emily Fairfax’s ASWM presentation on the ability of beavers to combat climate change, such as reducing wildfire damage.
Beaver Restoration for Climate Resiliency
The final webinar in the ASWM-BLM Beaver Restoration Webinar Series showcases research which indicates that beavers are able to create and maintain wetlands resistant to both seasonal and multiyear droughts and that this landscape wetting and drought buffering goes on to reduce or prevent burning in wildfire. Perhaps instead of relying solely on human engineering and management to create and maintain fire?resistant landscape patches, we could benefit from beaver’s ecosystem engineering to achieve the same goals at a lower cost.
Smokey the Beaver: beaver-dammed riparian corridors stay green during wildfire throughout the western USA
Study of how beaver ponds make nearby vegetation more resilient towards wildfires