Life on Land

Exmoor Welcomes First Wild Baby Beaver in 400 Years!

Image © National Trust

The birth marks the progress of a successful reintroduction scheme back in 2020.

Rewilding fans everywhere are celebrating the birth of a baby beaver at the National Trusts’ Holnicote Estate in Somerset, where the animals were reintroduced in 2020.

Camera traps have caught the baby (known as a kit) on film, suggesting the reintroduced adults are thriving and breeding. It is thought that the baby is currently around 6 weeks old.

The Eurasian beaver was hunted to extinction in the wild during the 16th century for fur and meat. However, the beavers provide important ‘engineering’ for natural habitats, restoring wetlands through dam-building and felling trees, which attracts other wildlife and reduces flooding. The National Trust states that the pair of beavers at Holnicote have already transformed the 6.7-acre woodland.

The good news comes just days after a new project to reintroduce beavers to London was announced. Beavers will be released to the marshlands in Tottenham as part of an important project to rewild the river systems of the capital city.

Posted by Claire Edwards 13 July 2021

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