Beaver dams, streamflow complexity, and a rare species

The northern leatherside chub has a patchy distribution across its range and has anecdotally been observed to occur in stream reaches with high habitat complexity. In this study we showed that leatherside chubs in Goose Creek occur in areas with high streamflow complexity and that streamflow complexity is often higher when there are active or abandoned beaver dams present, thus confirming anecdotal observations made by others.

Dauwalter, D.C., and J.D. Walrath. 2018. Beaver dams, streamflow complexity, and the distribution of a rare minnow, Lepidomeda copei. Ecology of Freshwater Fish 2018;27:606–616.

Trout Unlimited is a signatory to the Rangewide Conservation Agreement and Strategy for Northern Leatherside (Lepidomeda copei)

Path analysis model showing concptual (left) verusus observed (right) linkages among stream ecosystem elements and drivers of leatherside chub distribution in Goose Creek. (Click to enlarge)

Northern leatherside chub (Click to enlarge)

Abandoned beaver dam on Trapper Creek. (Click to enlarge)

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