SCOTLAND’s new beaver population is thriving according to a report, sparking calls for the reintroduction programme to be extended.
Wild beavers set free in the Highlands as part of a pioneering reintroduction scheme are thriving and causing no harm to vulnerable wildlife in the area, the study found. Studies also show the rodents, which existed throughout Scotland until the 16th century, have not had an adverse effect on local otter populations.
Beavers were hunted to extinction in the UK because of demand for their fur and a glandular oil secreted from the base of their tail that was believed to possess medicinal properties.
A recent YouGov poll commissioned by Scottish Beaver Trial partners suggests the public would like to see beavers back in the countryside, with 60% of respondents backing the reintroductions.