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We have made excellent progress preparing our 55 acre enclosure for the arrival of beavers, and after several weeks’ hard work, it is now ready.

We are hoping that our new resident beavers will be trapped anytime from now on Tayside, Scotland. We are now doing our final checks to make sure that the enclosure is completely beaver-proof, and that the habitat awaiting our new beavers is suitable. 

The key aspects of the enclosure are a tall perimeter fence that also drops below the surface, and the fixing of metal grills on all exit and entry points into the enclosure. 

A culvert in the enclosure, covered by beaver-proof grill

It’s important that beavers cannot leave the enclosure by burrowing, climbing or however else they try. This is particularly true of our location, which has connections to the Norfolk Broads and the Fens, which are important ecological and farming areas respectively. We don’t want beavers getting into these landscapes unknowingly!

Putting in a new culvert

While beavers were once native to England, they are currently listed as a non-native species by the English government. Projects like Wild Ken Hill are working to change that by keeping beavers in a controlled enclosure, measuring the changes, and contributing the results to the national understanding of how beavers behave. 

We are hoping that our project will generate positive outcomes, much like those recently reported on the oldest beaver trial in England at the river Otter. And we hope those changes help to convince to reinstate beavers as native species. Certainly this winter’s floods showed how much we need beavers back in our landscapes.

Until then, the beavers will kept inside their Fort Knox!

We’ve also been putting wire mesh on the base of any special veteran trees, so they don’t turn into beaver breakfast. We want the beavers to bring biodiversity benefits, but it’s also imperative to look after the biodiversity we already have in the form of these veteran trees. 

We will keep you updated on the timing of the release. And please don’t forget to follow us on Instagram for more frequent updates!

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