Discovering the ecosystem effects of beavers
Beaver "Dam Cam"
Take a glimpse into the world created by beavers
The American Beaver (Castor canadensis) is considered a keystone species due to its ecosystem engineering capabilities. It is well known that beavers create dams, however, fewer people understand the magnitude and cascading ecosystem effects involved in a well-established beaver complex. Beaver-created habitats provide resources that directly and indirectly affect many other species. The “Dam Cam” gives us a glimpse into a world created by beavers and home to many.
What is a keystone species?
Any species whose presence and role within the ecosystem have a disproportionally high impact on other organisms relative to its population size. Keystone species are critical to the structure and functionality of an ecosystem and influence what other species comprise that system.
What exactly is a Beaver complex, and why is it important?
The "Dam Cam"
We are building awareness of the critical role beavers play in our ecosystems through film. Scientists have documented the importance of beavers and the habitat they create for decades, yet public awareness of the ecological benefits of beavers is still lacking. In collaboration with the U.S. Forest Service and private partners, we will be documenting and monitoring wildlife usage of active beaver dams for 12 months. We will be sharing captured footage with the public and hope the benefits of beavers will be absorbed and spread far and wide.
Dam Cam Footage
Forging Aheadcombating climate change
During this time of climate change awareness and mitigation, it is critical that we look for support from our natural world and shine a light on species that can help us combat the effects we are already experiencing today. Unfortunately, science alone is no longer effective at directing the measurable changes necessary, science now needs the support and voices of the public. Beavers and the wetlands they create can help us and many other species withstand the climate change effects we are already seeing, such as increased wildfires and reductions in late season water resources and streamflow. We simply need to keep beavers on the landscape and allow them to do what they do naturally.
We need your help to change this narrative now!
Unfortunately, it is still legal for beavers to be trapped and killed without limit in most of Wyoming. There is a lack of tolerance for beavers on private lands and a deficiency in public and land manager awareness of effective coexistence methodologies for beavers. Our goal is to educate the public on the importance of beavers and encourage the public to spread this information to others, and advocate for their protection. In the wake of climate change, we need beavers on the landscape now, more than ever before.