Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Units Program: Massachusetts
Education, Research and Technical Assistance for Managing Our Natural Resources

Massachusetts Project


Effects of Dam Removal on Stream Ecosystems

July 2015 - January 2018


Personnel

Participating Agencies

  • Massachusetts Division of Ecological Restoration
Dam removal at Fall River in Greenfield, MA

Concerns about safety and interests in restoring stream connectivity have increased dam removal in the last two decades. This research investigates the effects of dam removal on stream ecosystems. We will quantify dissolved oxygen and temperature upstream, within, and downstream of impoundments at 12 sites in MA. Eight of the sites are slated for dam removal in 2015 and 2016, and we will quantify the effects of removal on dissolved oxygen, temperature, and other aspects of the stream ecosystem. Data will be useful in understanding the extent to which dams impair stream ecosystems and quantifying potential improvements in water quality following dam removal. Potential improvements can be used to leverage support for dam removal and help to prioritize dam removals that will maximize ecological benefits.

Presentations Presentation Date
Zaidel, P., A. Roy, K. Nislow, B. Letcher, B. Lambert, K. Houle, and C. Smith. 2016. Assessing the potential for dam removal to restore natural thermal and dissolved oxygen regimes. Life Sciences Graduate Research Symposium, University of Massachusetts, Amherst, MA. 2016-12-02
Zaidel, P., A. Roy, K. Nislow, B. Letcher, B. Lambert, K. Houle, and C. Smith. 2016. Assessing the potential for dam removal to restore natural thermal and dissolved oxygen regimes. Society for Ecological Restoration New England Chapter Annual Conference, 14-15 October 2016, Durham, NH. 2016-10-14
Zaidel, P.A., A.H. Roy, K.H. Nislow, B.H. Letcher, and C.R. Smith. 2016. Small dam impacts to stream temperature and potential consequences for aquatic biota. Northeast Natural History Conference, 22-24 April 2016, Springfield, MA. 2016-04-23
Zaidel, P.A., A.H. Roy, K.H. Nislow, B.H. Letcher, B. Lambert, K. Houle, and C.R. Smith. 2017. Factors explaining observed variation in dam-induced temperature and dissolved oxygen changes in Massachusetts streams. Annual Meeting of the New England Association of Environmental Biologists, 14-16 March 2017, Hartford, CT. 2017-03-14
Zaidel, P.A., A.H. Roy, K.H. Nislow, B.H. Letcher, B. Lambert, K. Houle, and C.R. Smith. 2017. Understanding variation in stream temperature and dissolved oxygen responses to small dams. Annual Meeting of the Society for Freshwater Science, 4-9 June 2017, Raleigh, NC. 2017-06-04
Zaidel, P.A., A.H. Roy, K.H. Nislow, B.H. Letcher, K. Houle, B. Lambert, and C.R. Smith. 2017. Tackling the worst first: Variable impacts of dams on stream temperature and dissolved oxygen. 4th Symposium on Urbanization and Stream Ecology, 31 May-3 June 2017, Browns Summit, NC. 2017-06-01
Zaidel, P.A., A.H. Roy, K.H. Nislow, C.R. Smith, and B.H. Letcher. 2016. Impacts of small, surface-release dams on stream temperature. Annual Meeting of the Society for Freshwater Science, 21-25 May 2016, Sacramento, CA. 2016-05-22
Zaidel, P.A., A.H. Roy, K.H. Nislow, C.R. Smith, and B.H. Letcher. 2016. Impacts of small, surface-release dams on stream temperature. New England Association of Environmental Biologists, 23-25 March 2016, Rockland, ME. 2016-03-23