At the Waters’ Edge: Sept 2014

      Earth is the water planet. Sometimes we lose sight of that out here on the dry plains. The average ranching mindset considers a stock tank or pond simply as a drinking station for livestock. For me, it can be so much more.

I’m a fan of the beaver. This little ecological engineering keystone species works tirelessly to construct habitat for itself that directly benefits everyone else in the ecosystem. Before they were trapped and slaughtered en masse, 90 million or so of these guys dammed waterways and spread water out over the landscape where lush vegetation and fertile soil accumulated to create an amazing and dynamic landscape. Wetlands are the kidneys of the land. They clean up the environment and provide so many ecosystem services, we couldn’t put a monetary value on it. Additionally, they provide recreational opportunities, pest control and valuable resources. We can protect natural wetlands on our land but we can also ‘be the beaver’ and use our technology to benefit the whole landscape by designing and constructing strategic water conveyance infrastructure that builds a regenerative agriculture which is a win win win economically, ecologically and socially.

Ben Tyler,
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