Wild beavers on the River Otter in SW England have bred

At least one of the two adult female beavers living wild on the River Otter in Devon has had two (or possibly more) young, called kits. Recent film taken by local film-maker Tom Buckley can be seen on the BBC News website and shows the mother guiding the young through the water (also see CBBC, Daily Mail, The Plymouth Herald, The Guardian, The Telegraph). This is positive news for the Beaver Otter Beaver Trial, a partnership lead by Devon Wildlife Trust, which has recently been given a licence by Natural England to study the colony (first confirmed to be present in February 2014) for five years. In all, there may be 11 or more beavers in the colony. Recently, as a condition of the licence, the adult beavers were briefly taken into captivity and tested for disease; they were all considered healthy. The mother and kits appear fit and well. There are no plans to tag the young beavers yet, although it is likely they will be at some time in the future. Local people and interested naturalists are asked to try and avoid disturbing the beavers by staying on the footpaths and keeping their dogs under control when near the river.

Posted on June 24, 2015 at 8:30 am

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