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

Utah Project


BLM & BoR: Utah Understanding the Dynamics of Beaver Re-Introduction for Passive Desert River...

October 2018 - September 2021


Personnel

Participating Agencies

  • Bureau of Land Management
Emma Doden, a Masters student at Utah State University, with a captured beaver kit along the Price River, UT. The beaver kit was PIT-tagged and released for future monitoring.

American beavers (Castor canadensis) are absent from or in low abundance in many river systems due to historic and current anthropogenic activity. Reintroduction of beavers, sometimes coupled with the addition of structural features (e.g. beaver dam analogs), to restore degraded systems is becoming more popular, though outcomes are variable and standardized best practices are lacking, especially in desert rivers. Beavers can serve as a cost-effective, natural restoration tool due to their dam-building behavior, promoting heterogeneity and drought-resiliency in rivers, and translocating nuisance beavers to restoration areas offers an alternative to lethal removal of problem beavers. Evaluating the efficacy of translocated beavers is imperative to improving beaver-assisted restoration techniques. This project is a collaboration of numerous institutions and agencies, including USGS Utah CRU, Utah State University, USDA National Wildlife Research Center, Bureau of Land Management, Bureau of Reclamation, and Utah Division of Wildlife Resources. The project will help to understand the complexities of translocation and its effect on vital rates, space use, and activity patterns of wildlife, which in turn will inform best practices for establishment of dam-building beavers in desert river restoration areas.

Technical Publications Publication Date
Doden, E. Budy, P., Young, J.K. 2019. Beaver re-introduction - Passive desert river restoration. Performance Report for the period January 1, 2019 to December 1, 2019 to the Bureau of Land Management. Agreement number L18AC00121. 2019-12-31
Presentations Presentation Date
Doden, E. Young, J.K., and Budy, P. 2020. Movements, fates, and activity patterns of resident and translocated beavers at desert restoration sites. Oral presentation. UT TWS annual meeting (cancelled due to COVID-19). Red Cliffs Lodge, Moab, UT. 2020-03-26
Doden, E., Young, J.K., Budy, P. 2020. One of the locals or new in town: Comparing resident and translocated beaver ecology at stream restoration sites. Research-in-progress poster. USGS Utah CRU Annual Meeting. Logan, UT. 2020-02-20
Doden, E., Young, J.K., Budy, P. 2019. One of the locals or new in town: Comparing resident and translocated beaver ecology at stream restoration sites. Student research-in-progress poster. Joint TWS and AFS National Conference. Reno, NV. 2019-09-30
Doden, E., Young, J.K., Budy, P. 2019. Comparison of resident and translocated beavers in desert stream restoration sites. Research proposal poster. USGS Utah CRU Annual Meeting. Salt Lake City, UT. 2019-04-24