Beavers: Friend or foe?

What happened to my favorite little trout creek? It’s now a series of trout ponds! And most of this happened since last year!

Most of you TUers know we’ve covered the issue of beavers in Trout magazine. In short, beavers can be extremely damaging to trout habitat in some places (like Wisconsin, where removal of beaver dams has improved brook trout numbers). Yet in other places, beavers can create more holding water and perhaps improve trout habitat. Whether they are the trout angler’s best friend or worst enemy often depends on where you are. At least that’s how I understand it.

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So this is what has happened to the little creek near my home in Colorado. Simple questions: Should I be happy or sad? Should I grab a chainsaw… or my two-weight rod?

I didn’t realize how prolific those beavers were. I had no idea of the scale of the change until very recently. Any other opinions or experiences like this out there?

— Kirk Deeter

By Chris Hunt.