Wednesday, 26 December 2012

150 beavers found living in Scotland 'unofficially'

Landowners encouraged to report beaver issues

December 2012. A study, run by Scottish Natural Heritage (SNH), has confirmed that approximately 146 beavers are presently living in the wild in rivers in Tayside. Surveys from May and July 2012, along with long-term observations, found that there are about 40 groups of beavers and seven dams in the Tay catchment. The beavers were found in the Tayside rivers and lochs stretching from Kinloch Rannoch, Kenmore and beyond Crieff in the west, to Forfar, Perth and Bridge of Earn in the East.

The researchers also spoke to farmers, fishermen and ghillies in the area. In response to their concerns about dam building, the report recommends measures such as installing devices to control water flow at problem beaver dams, protecting large and valuable trees next to rivers, and protecting lodges from being washed away to keep beaver construction activities to a minimum.

Official beaver study - Vast cost
The Scottish government issued a license to release a few beavers in Knapdale as part of a trial beaver introduction, at great expense. The cost has reached some £2 million, which seemd rediculous at the time. Now that they have revealed taht there is already a large, and thriving beaver population in Tayside, it makes the £2 million look even more wasteful.
Land use issues

The Tayside Beaver Study Group is encouraging landowners to contact them if they have any issues with beavers on their land.

David Bale, Chair of the Tayside Beaver Study Group, said: "This report is an important starting point for the Tayside Beaver Study Group. For the first time, we have a clear picture of how many beavers there are and how far they have spread. As the beavers are in an area with both farming and fishing, this is a good chance to see how beavers may affect land use.


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