Fly Fishing
Fly Fishing Our rivers and streams provide endless bounty. © Nick Hall

Stories in New Hampshire

Future of Nature: Charting a Course for Waters

Fostering sustainability from our rivers to the sea.

Local New Hampshire fishermen haul in the day's catch.
Fishing the Gulf of Maine Local New Hampshire fishermen haul in the day's catch. © Sarah Van Horn

New Hampshire’s rivers and streams once flowed freely, uninterrupted, to the edge of the sea. Today these waterways are choked by more than 2,600 aging dams and 15,000 culverts. River herring and shad no longer return home to spawn, and brook trout struggle to reach cool headwaters. Every storm generates polluted run-off that spills into our waterways. Habitat degradation threatens intact floodplains and the drinking water vital to community health and sustainability. The 2016 drought was an ominous reminder—we can’t take our freshwater for granted. Our estuary and marine waters, too, are struggling. Groundfish numbers, including the iconic cod, have plummeted. Nearly 90 percent of Great Bay’s oyster reefs have been lost. Declining water quality, rising water temperatures and nutrient loading—the list goes on.

Oysters Underwater
Fish-Eye View Oysters growing on one of TNC restored shellfish reefs. © Simon Branigan/TNC


There’s still time to protect and restore our New Hampshire waters. The Conservancy’s comprehensive approach to the water challenge focuses on both freshwater and saltwater. This campaign will

  • Launch a new freshwater program designed to restore and reconnect our rivers and streams.
  • Conserve our critical floodplains and protect our precious drinking water.
  • Expand our saltwater program including: restoring oyster reefs, fostering sustainable fisheries, improving water quality, protecting our shoreline, and helping fishermen learn more effective ways to draw a living from the sea.

With your support, we can write a new story for our New Hampshire waters.