Articles | Volume 21, issue 2
Research article
20 Feb 2017
Research article |  | 20 Feb 2017

Rapid surface-water volume estimations in beaver ponds

Daniel J. Karran, Cherie J. Westbrook, Joseph M. Wheaton, Carol A. Johnston, and Angela Bedard-Haughn

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Cited articles

Baker, B. W. and Hill, E. P.: Beaver (Castor canadensis), in: Wild Mammals of North America: Biology, Management, and Conservation, edited by: Feldhamer, G., Thompson, B., and Chapman, J., The John Hopkins University Press, Baltimore, Maryland, 288–310, 2003.
Brooks, R. T. and Hayashi, M.: Depth-area-volume and hydroperiod relationships of ephemeral (vernal) forest pools in southern New England, Wetlands, 22, 247–255,[0247:DAVAHR]2.0.CO;2, 2002.
Butler, D. R. and Malanson, G. P.: The geomorphic influences of beaver dams and failures of beaver dams, Geomorphology, 71, 48–60,, 2005.
ESRI: ArcGIS Desktop, available at: (last access: 20 June 2016), 2015.
Fang, X., Pomeroy, J. W., Westbrook, C. J., Guo, X., Minke, A. G., and Brown, T.: Prediction of snowmelt derived streamflow in a wetland dominated prairie basin, Hydrol. Earth Syst. Sci., 991–1006,, 2010.
Short summary
Beaver ponds are found in many landscapes and their transient nature makes it difficult to account for the surface water they store using traditional methods. We found that reliable estimates of surface water storage in beaver ponds can be made with simple measurements of pond depth and surface area. This makes it possible for hydrologists and environmental managers to include beaver ponds in models and land use planning decisions without the need for resource intensive topographic surveys.