Tag Results: Biodiversity / Keystone SpeciesBack
In general, rewilding aims to reestablish vital ecological processes that can involve removing troublesome nonnative species and restoring key native species. Our rewilding call is grounded in ecological science and is necessary regardless of changing political winds. Our objective is to follow up on President Biden’s vision to conserve, connect, and restore by identifying a large reserve network in the American West suitable for rewilding two keystone species, the gray wolf (Canis lupus) and the North American beaver (Castor canadensis).
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.
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.
This first webinar in the Association of State Wetland Managers (ASWM) and Bureau of Land Management (BLM) co-hosted six-part webinar series on beaver restoration details how beaver affect the land and the hydrologic impacts from loss of beaver through various hunting, trapping and removal activities. The webinar shared the role that beavers and beaver dam analogs (BDAs) can play in stream restoration.
This guidebook provides a practical synthesis of the best available science for using beaver to improve ecosystem functions. The overall goal is to provide an accessible, useful resource for those involved in using beaver to restore streams, floodplains, wetlands, and riparian ecosystems.
Opinion piece explaining why President Biden should create an Ecosystem Restoration Corps in 2021 to create jobs and improve this country’s environment.
A comprehensive compilation of information related to beavers and their management with an emphasis on stream restoration.
Ecological engineering and aquatic connectivity: a new perspective from beaver-modified wetlands, 2014
This study demonstrated that beavers actively increase the volume-to-surface area ratio of wetlands by almost 50% and that their digging of foraging channels increases average wetland perimeters by over 575%. They concluded that exclusion or removal of beavers could limit ecosystem processes and resilience.
A literature review and summary of the beaver’s impact as an ecosystem engineer. It focuses primarily on the European beaver (castor fiber), but includes valuable information about the profound ecological benefits of the North American beaver (castor Canadensis) too.
This landmark 20 year study compares traditional lethal beaver control versus nonlethal management methods in the town of Billerica, MA. A total of 55 beaver conflict sites were studied. Sites that were managed with nonlethal control methods cost taxpayers significantly less than sites that were managed with beaver removal, and provided millions of dollars of ecological services to the town annually that would have been lost with beaver removal.
A brief overview of beaver history, ecology and management in North America.
This publication, guided by the inseparable nature of streams and riparian ecosystems, emphasizes the interrelationships and continuity of riparian areas along with dependent wildlife and human services.
If beavers are to have a place in the current landscape configurations of modern America, we must make space for them.
Summary of the benefits of beavers, their conflicts with humans, and the policies and conditions that affect their survival
Educational article on the value of beavers by the Habitat Program supporting fish habitat conservation and restoration across Alaska, Washington, Oregon, California, and Idaho. Includes video and other helpful links.