Researchers at the University of Alberta in Canada have revealed that American beavers (Castor canadensis) play a valuable role in protecting populations of some amphibians. By comparing the amphibian populations in beaver-inhabited streams to amphibian populations in streams without beavers, the team was able to uncover strong trends that show how amphibians thrive in beaver-inhabited waters.
The ponds that form behind beaver dams provide good habitat in which tadpoles can develop. The research suggests that amphibian conservation may be strengthened by protecting beavers as well.
The team studied three species of frog: the western toad, boreal chorus frog, and the wood frog.
Find out more:
- Beavers 'Helping Frogs Survive' (BBC News)
- Beaver Dams Important to Frogs, Researcher Says (CBC News)
- Beavers Act as Surrogates for Frogs (New Scientist)
- Beavers Helping Frogs And Toads Survive (Science Daily)
- Schindler, D.W. 1998. Sustaining Aquatic Ecosystems in Boreal Regions. Ecology and Society. Vol. 2, No. 2.
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