Beavers in the Avon

Wild beavers recorded in Avon for the first time in 400 years

Katie Hill - Editor-in-Chief, My Green Pod

Home » Beavers in the Avon

Published: 2 October 2021

This Article was Written by: Katie Hill - My Green Pod

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New evidence from Avon Wildlife Trust has shown wild beavers are thriving in the Avon catchment area – making this one of the UK’s first regions in which the endangered species has established itself without human assistance or interference for over 400 years.
 
Since the early 2000s, beavers have been reintroduced across the UK through conservation trials like the River Otter Beaver Trial in Devon.

A keystone species

At a time when the UK government has launched a landmark consultation on the reintroduction of beavers in England, this new sighting of three generations confirms that beavers are successfully expanding their range naturally.

The Wildlife Trusts have been at the forefront of beaver conservation in Britain, and Avon Wildlife Trust is now delighted to have beavers on its own patch. A family of beavers has been recorded in the area, including three baby beavers (kits) born this year.

‘A new sighting of wild beavers is extremely significant. Beavers are a keystone species and they have an extraordinary ability to change habitats to suit their needs while creating ecosystems for other species to thrive. The presence of this beaver population will support other wildlife and help us to tackle the ecological emergency.’

AMY COULTHARD
Director of Nature’s Recovery, Avon Wildlife Trust

 

30 by 30

Avon Wildlife Trust recently launched the 30 by 30 appeal, to raise £30,000 to help ensure at least 30% of our land and sea is connected and protected for nature’s recovery by 2030.
 
Funds raised through the appeal will go towards nature recovery projects like the Avon beavers and the newly appointed Beaver Management Group, which involves statutory partners, NGOs and other local interest groups.

The group will monitor the new population and work with landowners in the catchment area to maximise the benefits beavers provide as well as manage their impact.

Beavers and biodiversity

                                                                                                                                                  
A five-year scientific study conducted by the Wildlife Trusts shows that the presence of beavers has a wide range of positive effects on biodiversity, nature and people.

The research found that active beavers improve water quality, reduce flood risk and increase biodiversity. Ponds created by beavers may host 50% more unique species than other wetlands.

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