Welcome to the Fluvial Habitats Center website, which is a joint research facility shared by Dr. Joe Wheaton's Ecogeomorphology and Topographic Analysis Lab (ET-AL) and Dr. Nick Bouwes's Eco Logical Research Lab at Utah State University in the Department of Watershed Sciences. Together with research scientists Wally Macfarlane & Steve Bennett, this team makes up the Fluvial Habitats Center.
What we do and why
We are a group of fluvial scientists fascinated by how fluvial processes (e.g. erosion, deposition, transport and storage of sediment) combined with biotic processes (e.g. ecosystem engineering by beaver and plants) shape riverscapes (i.e. channels, floodplains & riparian areas) to create habitat for such a rich range of flora and fauna. We study these phenemona, and in so doing we:
- Develop and refine theories about how riverscapes and the biota that depend on them behave and interact
- Develop new methods for monitoring, new analytical techinques as well as tools to better study and understand riverscapes
- Train the next generation of scientists to tackle the scientific and management challenges facing understanding, preserve and improve riverscapes
- Help managers and practitioners apply this knowledge to tackle the management and restoration challenges
The Wheaton ET-AL Lab and Fluvial Habitats Center are based in beautiful Cache Valley, in Northern Utah, nestled between the Wellsvilles (shown here) and the Bear River Range.