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Happy news - return of beavers across England.

FireFire Posts: 17,390
edited February 2020 in The potting shed
It seems that Natural England are finally giving the greenlight for widespread beaver re-introductions. After 400 years of UK exinction (driven by the fur trade) they are now in North Yorkshire, Cornwall, Essex, Devon, Somerset and Gloucestershire. This year, beaver pairs will be returned to Cumbria, Norfolk, West Sussex and Dorset. Hopefully they will move widely along river corridors once they are settled in. The first the National Trust to accept them is at the Holnicote estate on Exmoor. And Knepp Rewilding in Sussex are delighted to finally get approval. It's only taken 20 years of lobbying.



  • ObelixxObelixx Posts: 29,653
    Great news.  Fascinating critters and good for flood control too.
    Vendée - 20kms from Atlantic coast.
    "We don't stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing." - George Bernard Shaw
  • wild edgeswild edges Posts: 9,939

    Tradition is just peer pressure from dead people
  • FireFire Posts: 17,390
  • LG_LG_ Posts: 4,255
    It is good news :smile:. I'll be really interested to hear about their impacts - reports so far seem to say they make a difference to flooding pretty quickly, and we can be sure they'll be heavily monitored and studied. Am assuming you've read Wilding. 
    'If you have a garden and a library, you have everything you need.'
    - Cicero
  • treehugger80treehugger80 Posts: 1,923
    edited February 2020
    I work in conservation, in the last 20 years i've lost count of the times i've had to find my 'inner beaver' to block up drainage ditches/gullies/ small rivers with branches,
    it causes the land around the watercourse to flood with a small depth of water which is slow moving, which is perfect for lots of aquatic wildlife (and things that eat them)
    as well as re-wetting peat areas, returning them to bog and marsh
  • FireFire Posts: 17,390
    @LG_ "Am assuming you've read Wilding."  

    Yes, I'm a big supporter of the Knepp rewilding project. I went down several times last year and going again this.They have been trying to get beavers on the land for years. Natural England seemed convinced they could be disease vectors.

    I think it's a bit soon for long term UK impacts but there is some info on the original River Otter beaver trial here.

  • Papi JoPapi Jo Posts: 3,996
    Whenever I hear the word "beaver" I'm reminded of the first "animated cartoon" CD-ROM I discovered, the "Living books" series back in the early 1990's. Look for the beaver's rap at 7:50.

    You are invited to a virtual visit of my garden (in English or in French).
  • Beavers good for frogs and herons who eat the frogs so why not.
  • FireFire Posts: 17,390
    I just heard that 87 beavers were shot and killed in Scotland last years and 83 dams destroyed. Legally. And under protected licence. They were said to be threatening farming land.

    It's heart breaking.
  • FairygirlFairygirl Posts: 54,009
    Because it's a very contentious issue @Fire
    Farming in large parts of Scotland is not a straightforward process.
    It's a place where beautiful isn't enough of a word....

    I live in west central Scotland - not where that photo is...
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