Are beavers harmful to the environment?

Environmentalists may be pleased that beaver populations are on the rise, but some farmers and land owners have expressed concern about the animal’s impact on the natural landscape.

Beavers “were common in England but were hunted to extinction in the 16th century” in England and Wales, said. Guardians. But within the past decade, the Eurasian beaver has “slowly returned to Britain”, Museum of Natural History (NHM).

Since a group of up to 200 wild beavers were discovered in the River Tay in Scotland in 2001, the country has begun reintroducing the species, which is now recognized as native to the country and has recognized as a European Protected Species.

It is believed that wild beavers died for good in England, but in 2013 a family of three were seen in the River Otter in Devon. NHM said the government’s plan at the time to capture and place the family in a zoo or wildlife park “was met with strong opposition from local residents and advocacy groups”. NHM said.

Instead, “after receiving a clean medical bill”, they were returned to the river in 2015. BBC.

Since then, there have been many sightings of the wild animals. Monitoring programs have seen a record number of beavers introduced in the UK, and more to come.

“Of course, there are some concerns” about the re-emergence of the species, NHM continued. In general, “environmentalists love them and land managers don’t,” says rancher Tom Bowser in Scotist.

“Apart from humans, no other species has altered its environment more,” says National Geography. They have been called “‘ecosystem engineers’ for their ability to benefit other species, reduce flooding, increase water retention, and reduce moodiness,” said Guardians.

But while they can prevent flooding, by building dams, they can also cause it. In Scotland, Bowser says animals have been killed in “astonishing numbers” since 2019, with farmers and property owners being able to get permits to euthanize the problem animals. to cause floods on their land.

Bowser argues that this is due to “institutional failure”, and that the government should do more to facilitate the relocation of beaver species to areas where the benefits of the presence their will be perceived better. Holyrood promised to do more to support the beaver migration last year.

And researchers are learning from other communities where beavers live in harmony alongside humans. In Bavaria, Germany, “unwanted tree cutting was solved simply by painting the trunk with sand or wrapping wire mesh around it”, and “the unwanted flooding was dealt with” by devices for allow some water to flow through them, NHM said.

“Simple solutions” could allow beavers and humans to “share the same space in a friendly manner,” continued the NHM page. Although they can be “annoying”, beavers “limit environmental catastrophe in a natural, sustainable and cost-effective way”.

https://www.theweek.co.uk/news/environment/956034/are-beavers-bad-for-the-environment Are beavers harmful to the environment?

Fry Electronics Team

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