Protecting our Scottish Wild Beavers

The Scottish Wild Beaver Group is an officially recognised charity (SCIO) SC042626 and was formed in 2011 in response to the decision of the Scottish government to start trapping the wild beavers that have lived in the River Tay and its many tributaries for over 10 years.  One Beaver was captured and, sadly, died in captivity.  Trapping was suspended over the summer 2011.

In March 2012 the then environment minister Mr Stewart Stevenson decided that there would be an amnesty for the free beavers of the Tay. This would last until a firm decision was reached at the end of the trial in Knapdale whether to accept the return of the Eurasian beaver to Scotland or not.

Preliminary surveys carried out by our members suggested a population of 80 to 100 beavers by autumn 2010. The official survey carried out in 2012 estimated a population of around  140.

SWBG fully supports the Tayside Beaver Study Group’s beaver sampling programme, which is being done to establish the health and genetic status of the beavers, and will be carried out with the welfare of the beavers in mind.

SWBG welcome the new paper from University of Southampton showing that beaver impacts on salmon are mainly positive.