Wednesday, 3 June 2009
The Beavers are Back!
I have been a bad blogger this week, but I do have an excuse! I'm very proud to announce the return of the Beaver to Scotland after an extinction of around 400 years.
It has been one of the most hectic and stressful periods of my life being involved in this project, but I'm so very honoured to be here.
I was a little busy for taking photos, but you can see footage of the beavers (and a little bit of me I'm afraid) here.
Contrary to apparent popular belief, I am not now taking a break after a very busy time. While all the other staff buzzed off back to Edinburgh and Glasgow, I was left with my dedicated little team here in Knapdale. I can't thank Karen, John, Philippa, Chris and Roisin enough for their help and support this last week.
It's all very well releasing beavers, but now I have to ensure that I keep tabs on them, record their activity and stay on good terms with landowners, lest my charges wander where they are not wanted. I've not had a great deal of time off, or sleep recently, but being out on the water, in the glorious weather we've been enjoying, has hardly been a chore.
This is now how Chris and I spend most of our evenings. Sorry I didn't have a decent enough lens, but there really are beavers in some of these photos!
The beavers are settling well and are beginning to build their own lodges, which is great to see. The other night I was driving down one of the forest tracks and found a stick across the path that hadn't been there half an hour earlier. I stopped and got out and look what I found!
The beavers had come down the stream, up the bank and across the track to cut down one of the willows. Why that particular willow was so particularly desirable when the loch edges have plenty I will never know, but it is good to see them making themselves so at home.
I'm getting a beaver blog soon so I won't have to bore you all with tales of my work; but I'll provide the address when I have it, in case anyone is interested.