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Wednesday 17th December, 2008

Go Beav's!

It's a common cheer here in Oregon, especially during football season.

But maybe all of us fish lovers should start becoming beaver fans.

We're discussing that very topic over on the Board, where foreignmuck was wondering about the pros and cons of beaver reintroduction in Scotland as it pertains to salmon.

Well, it turns out that beavers are/have been, according the scientific community, a critical component of many ecosystems all over the world where they are a native species. Their habits of building dams and creating ponds diversify habitat and play critical roles in the life histories of everything from songbirds to salmon. They influence on hydrology is profound, and it has been shown that watersheds with healthy beaver populations not only provide better fish and wildlife habitat, but also are less prone to flooding in their downstream reaches where people often choose to live.

Sure they can cause some problems around the farm or in urban areas, but as anglers we owe it to ourselves to be informed on the issues. Beavers have long been maligned as pests and their dens and dams destroyed in the name of fish conservation and habitat enhancement, or they have been trapped into extinction for their fur. Hindsight is 20/20, and from here on out we should think twice about cursing the beaver, natures habitat enhancement engineer.

Take a few minutes to look at the links in the thread and learn why you should be a beaver fan.

Fish on,

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