Released in the Methow Watershed as part of the Okanogan-Wenatchee National Forest beaver relocation project, the beavers will dam streams, helping with critical restoration of aquatic habitat and riparian ecosystems. The work of beavers leads to improvements in water quality, riparian function, and stream complexity. This benefits native fish populations, including bull trout, steelhead and Spring Chinook, all species listed under the federal Endangered Species Act.
Additionally, the underground water storage capacity of each beaver dam is estimated at 36 million gallons each year. This is good news for fish and people, as climate change advances and less snowpack is predicted. Thanks to the work of beavers and the resulting water storage, streams will continue to flow.
The project, led by U.S. Forest Service biologists Kent Woodruff and John Rohrer, is done in partnership with the Methow Salmon Recovery Foundation , the Washington Department of Fish & Wildlife , and the U.S. Department of Fish & Wildlife . A team of biologists from the Washington Department of Fish & Wildlife will continue monitoring the beavers throughout this and upcoming seasons.
On hand to assist the biologists with the release were personnel from the USFS Regional Office, Shoshona Pilip-Florea and Margaret Petersen; USFS Okanogan-Wenatchee Deputy Forest Supervios Jason Kuiken; USFS Methow Valley District Ranger, Mike Liu; and National Forest Foundation staff, Mary Mitsos, Lisa Leonard and Dayle Wallien.