In an unlikely upside, 2020 marks the return of beavers to England’s wilderness.

Beavers are back! In August, the government’s five year trial to reintroduce the species into England’s natural world was completed. Two family groups of beavers bred successfully in the river Otter in Devon and will now continue to settle in new areas. 

Beavers are so dam important

Beavers’ ability to build dams helps improve water quality and flow, preventing floods and increasing biodiversity. 

According to research from the University of Exeter, beavers “played a significant role” in filtering pollutants from water at a place where they built 12 dams and ponds.  

According to the same study, the flood-prone community of East Budleigh saw peak flood flows drop significantly, after a family of beavers constructed six dams upstream of the village.

It also found that fish numbers increased in places where beavers had built their dams. 

Where have they been?

The Eurasian beaver was part of the British natural landscape until a few centuries ago. Its valuable fur and meat made it a popular hunting target and the species became extinct in the 16th century. 

They are now being reintroduced as part of the government 25 Year Environment Plan to improve the environment.

Beavers released in Essex for the first time in 400 years had two offspring in March this year and beavers released in Somerset in January built the first dam in Exmoor.

At chXout we carry out beaver sexing through DNA analysis of a plucked pelt sample. We use PCR based techniques to amplify selective regions of the X or Y chromosomes to differentiate sexes with high accuracy. Our service will provide you with accurate and fast results to aid monitoring, re-introductions and ex situ conservation breeding programmes. 

Check out this service today!