Relocating Nuisance Beaver

There are places where beaver just don't make sense - leading to the "nuisance" label. In these cases, relocation may be considered. It's not the first choice in solutions - because relocation is expensive and if quality habitat is available, beaver will generally find it - sooner or later - and continue remodeling it to suit their tastes, restoring the stream in that way. And on the other hand, unoccupied habitat will often be re-occupied. Sometimes quite rapidly.

But sometimes, we want to turn that picture around and actually use beaver to create habitat. Or the area to be restored is a long way from existing beaver that could colonize it, or we just want to speed up restoration. With suitable permits, preparation and landowner agreement, it is possible to live trap and introduce beaver. It is not a simple, quick or inexpensive process. Nor is releasing beaver the end of the process, because a beaver in new surroundings faces a tough road.

The Institute has successfully reintroduced beaver to a ranch in New Mexico for the purpose of stream restoration. We may do additional reintroductions in the future, if specific criteria are met. Landowners who are interested in using beaver for stream restoration are welcome to contact us.

Above, a beaver prepares to leave a pet crate and re-enter the water at its new home. Below, maybe a little encouragement is needed. Both photos: Sally Thomson Photography

Above, a beaver prepares to leave a pet crate and re-enter the water at its new home. Below, maybe a little encouragement is needed.

Both photos: Sally Thomson Photography