Beaver Ponds as Catchment-Wide Retention Basins for Heavy Metals Sequestration

Document Type


Publication Date

Spring 3-31-2021


Beaver Ponds, Heavy Metal Sequestration, Water, Retention Basins


As beaver dam analogue (BDA) structures become a popular restoration technique, the need to better understand the capabilities of natural beaver dam complexes has become evident. To that aim, sediment cores were drilled on an abandoned, dry pond surface in the Anaconda Uplands of Montana. The core samples were analyzed to determine sediment type and texture, pH values, nutrient content, and contaminant concentrations. Data was evaluated based on ‘Reclamation Criteria’ set forth by the EPA as part of the Anaconda Regional Water, Waste, & Soils Baseline Ecological Risk Assessment which outlined minimum physiochemical specifications for soils in this Wildlife Management Area. This talk will focus on 1) methods used and their practicality as a field-based analysis process for future work, 2) the Big-Hole Watershed Committee’s data-informed restoration plan for the area, and 3) implications for BDA designs based on study results.

Streaming Media


Carly A. Peach is a degree candidate for the Masters of Geoscience, Hydrology Option at Montana Tech. She is simultaneously earning a Graduate Certificate in Ecological Restoration. She started fulltime at the Montana Bureau of Mines and Geology (MBMG) in January 2021. She looks forward to graduating and continuing her work at MBMG as a Professional Scientist in the Groundwater Investigation Program.