Flood of opportunities below dams

When author Edward Abbey famously wrote “The Monkey Wrench Gang” in 1975, he was roundly condemned for portraying eco-terrorists plotting to blow up Glen Canyon Dam on the Colorado River. Forty years later, the aging of the world’s dams, coupled with increasing awareness of their environmental costs, has brought dam decommissioning and re-operation to the attention of the scientific community,...
read more

A global perspective on crayfish invasions

Crayfish, also known as “crawfish”, “mudbugs”, and “crawdads”, are freshwater crustaceans known more for their tasty tail meat than their destructive behaviors. In fact, crayfish are so well liked as a culinary item that two species indigenous to the United States have been introduced to Europe and Asia for aquaculture. Unfortunately, these non-native crayfish escaped the lakes and aquaculture...
read more

Beavers at work: good for native fish?

Walk along a river down in Arizona or New Mexico and you might see fallen trees, distinctive pencil-shaped gnawed stumps, or even a small dam across the stream – all signs of a beaver at work. Beavers, of course, are famous for their ability to build dams and change their environment; but, although beavers in North America range throughout most of the desert Southwest and into northern Mexico,...
read more

Keeping the wolf at the gate and the bass in the bag

Smallmouth bass make for a great fight on the line, and long ago home-sick easterners, reminiscent for their favorite sport fish, set out to introduce them in their new homes of the Pacific Northwest. The introduction of smallmouth bass sparked controversy even in the late 19th century. Archives from the Oregonian, the Pacific Northwest’s longest running newspaper, capture both sides of this...
read more

Native invaders divide loyalties

A drawback to the attention garnered by high-profile invasive species is the tendency to infer that every non-native species is bad news, the inverse assumption being that all native species must be ‘good’. While this storyline works well for Hollywood films and fairy tales, in ecology the truth is rarely that simple. A new review article that Julian co-authored in the September issue of...
read more