We are pleased to be associated with the Scottish Beaver Trial. There are signs around our property of beaver activity and movements. Attached comments from the RZSS.
The Scottish Beavers project has been delighted to call Gartnagrenach its home for the past few beaver monitoring surveys. A joint project between the Royal Zoological Society of Scotland and the Scottish Wildlife Trust, the Scottish Beavers project builds on the Scottish Beaver Trial, which saw the first ever successful reintroduction of a mammal to the UK, right here in Knapdale Forest.
The Knapdale beaver population was established as part of the Scottish Beaver Trial back in 2010-11, when 16 beavers were brought over from Norway and released into various lochs in Knapdale. Today, the forest is home to 20-30 beavers, and the Scottish Beavers project works to improve the prospects of this population by bringing beavers to Knapdale from Tayside in the east of Scotland, and by monitoring the population and assessing its genetic health.
There are beavers on most of the lochs within Knapdale Forest, including Linne and Fidhle, which are just down the track from Gartnagrenach. Look closely there, or take a walk round Collie Bharr and Barnluasgan just across the road, and you might spot some beaver activity. From felling trees and building dams and nibbling twigs, beavers make an impact wherever they are. Look for the bright orange wood that’s exposed when beavers feel a tree to give a clue to where they’ve been active most recently.
Scottish Beavers team members visit Knapdale at least twice a year to carry out our six-monthly monitoring surveys in March and September, and we also visit when we’re releasing animals being moved across from Tayside. We’re very lucky to be able to stay here, right in the heart of the Knapdale beaver population, and we very much appreciate the support and hospitality of Alasdair, Sheena, and Charlie.
Thanks to the work of the Scottish Beavers team, the support of Scottish Natural Heritage, Forestry and Land Scotland, Heart of Argyll Wildlife Organisation, and folks like Alasdair and Sheena, in May 2020, beavers were granted European Protected Status in Scotland. This means beavers are back and they’re here to stay. This is great news for beavers, and great news for Scotland’s landscape and wildlife, much of which stands to benefit from the activities of these amazing ecosystem engineers.
We hope you enjoy your stay here as much as we do, and be sure to ask Alasdair and Sheena to point you in the direction of the latest beaver activity!
Dr Helen Taylor RZSS on behalf of Scottish Beavers