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Beavering about

I'm just back from a couple of days visiting my sister in Perthshire. Whilst I was there, I has a beaver-tastic time. My sister is lucky enough to have the river Dochart flow past the end of her garden and she has had some amazing beaver and otter sightings there. So we spent an evening sitting on the river bank; looking at the fabulous views; listening to cuckoo, and dunlin and grasshopper warblers; watching the sand martins hawking for flies over the river and a red kite circling above us. Then we were lucky enough to have a beaver swim-by by a beaver - it came within 12 foot of us, with its mind on motoring on up with river. Magical!

The next day we went to look at an area where beaver dams had caused a bit of flooding of the adjacent cycle path, so the local rangers had inserted a "beaver deceiver" into the dam (see picture below). Basically a bit pipe through the dam so however high the beavers build the dam, the water level will never get high enough to flood the cycle path. A brilliantly simple solution, letting both beavers and humans get on with what they want to do!

There was other evidence of beaver activity in the area too, including the pretty large tree, pictured above) that the beavers has obviously been working away at for some time, leaving it a little precariously perched right by the path. The rangers were concerned about the safety of path users, so they has to fell it, but they left the felled tree in place for the beavers to eat.

So fabulous to see one of our native mammals, which was hunted to extinction in the 16th Century, once again thriving in our countryside.

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