Staff at Dinosaur recently hosted a River Science Symposium to bring researchers together to share information. The deep river canyons of the Green and Yampa present a perfect laboratory to examine how dams and other elements affect rivers. The unregulated flow of the Yampa River serves as the baseline against which the Green River downstream of Flaming Gorge Dam is measured. The hybrid Green below the confluence of the Green and the Yampa shows how the unregulated Yampa restores properties lost in the Green when the dam, which is 46 miles upsteam of Dinosaur, was constructed. Research on Dinosaur’s rivers has been on-going for several decades.
The symposium brought together researchers from universities and federal and state agencies. Researchers presented findings about endangered fish and non-native species, geomorphic responses to floods, comparisons of aquatic macroinvertebrates in the Yampa and the Green, monitoring protocols for big rivers, and assessing drivers of riparian vegetation patterns. The symposium presented the opportunity to discuss the on-going research and help to identify additional scientific needs.