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.

What is it that draws us to the water’s edge? To the meandering stillness of a river winding toward the sea or the steady rhythm of the surf against the shore? To the cascading music of a mountain stream or the shifting light across the bay? New Hampshire’s waters have always offered abundant gifts: peaceful vistas and clean drinking water, good fishing and scenic excursions, hydropower and irrigation. Water sustains us, body and soul.

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

Today, that water is in peril. Dams and other barriers prevent the free movement of fish and other organisms in our rivers and streams. With our changing climate come stronger storms that generate polluted run-off and increase flooding events, impacting our communities. Habitat degredation threatens our floodplain forests and the drinking water we all need to survive. Our estuary and marine waters are struggling too. 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.


A diver holding a clump of 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.