The Effect of Dams on Wildlife
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My Scoop on The Effect of Dams on Wildlife

My Scoop on The Effect of Dams on Wildlife | The Effect of Dams on Wildlife | Scoop.it

Dams are water diversion blockades that go across rivers and control the flow of water.  Some of the world's most famous dams include the Hover Dam, the Three Gorges Dam, the Glen Canyon Dam, Aswap High Dam, and Karina Dam.  Although these dams vary in location and size, they all share the same charactersitics that alter the surrounding environment. Every aspect of an ecosystem is affected when a dam is build because everything that lives depends on the water that is being manipulated.

The decision to build a dam in any area is a very controversial one because of all the associated pros and cons.  When the Hoover Dam was built, it's main benefit was the mass amount of hydroelectric energy that was generated because of it.  Along with generating energy, dams also provide flood control and recreation for the people who inhabit its surrounding area. They do not have to fear a flood wiping out their house and can enjoy swimming or fishing in the large reservoir the dam created. Dams also provide storage of water for human consumption.  It is easy to access because the water is stagnant for the most part towards the dam.

Although there are a few positives to the creation of dams, they are mostly detrimental to the environment for many reasons.  The most prominent flaw in dams is the interruption of the natural flow of water.  This affects everything in the ecosystem from the migrating fish to the animals that live on the banks of the river.  Along with environmental costs, dams are also extremely expensive financially.  Along with displacing the people who live near it, dams cause a loss of habitat and loss of water downstream. The exact effect of dams on the environment cannot be predicted or measured in numbers but can be seen in the changing ecosystem around it.

 

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About the Effects of Dams on Birds | The Nature Conservancy

About the Effects of Dams on Birds | The Nature Conservancy | The Effect of Dams on Wildlife | Scoop.it

"Most people don't think about birds when they think about the impact a dam might have on wildlife. However, dams can have a profound effect on the food and nesting habitat of many species of birds."  Birds are among the forgotten animals when people consider the effects of dams on wildlife.  Nobody takes into consideration the fact that birds of all kinds from ducks to shorebirds and flycatchers are effected by a change in the ecosystem.  The Nature Conservancy is working to minimize the effects of dams on the environment.

 

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Rivers No More: The Environmental Effects of Large Dams

Rivers No More: The Environmental Effects of Large Dams | The Effect of Dams on Wildlife | Scoop.it

The Roman Dam in Spain is a large dam that has been effecting the environment around it for over two millennia.  Dams such as this one stop water flow and thus alter the natural environment, resulting in detrimental change to the ecosystem. Before a dam is constructed, it is almost impossible for engineers to predict precisely how much of an impact a dam has on the surrounding environment.

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Graphic of Dam

Graphic of Dam | The Effect of Dams on Wildlife | Scoop.it

This diagram shows the different parts of the GIBE-3 dam that is currently under construction on the Omo River in Ethiopia. The Ethiopian Electric Power Company (EEPCo) estimates that this dam will bring in around $400 million in revenue for the country and generate about 6500 Gw of energy per year.  It will also regulate the flow of the river (which floods annually) and result in a resevoir about 200 sq km in size that can be used for fishing.

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DNR - Dams

DNR - Dams | The Effect of Dams on Wildlife | Scoop.it

Dams disrupt the natural environment by displacing organic matter unevenly causing species to clump into one area.  This causes many changes in the fragile ecosystem.  Also, improper management of dams may cause even more problems attributed to flooding than the flood itself.  There are many old dams across the world that are at risk of collapsing and further causing environmental distress.

 

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