Proposal to move beavers to Loch Lomond


A new proposal to move Eurasian Beavers to 'an ideal site' beside Loch Lomond has been announced by RSPB Scotland.

An individual beaver was spotted foraging in the Loch Lomond National Nature Reserve in 2019 – it is thought to have reached the area naturally. Surveys have been carried out since then to identify areas where they are likely to settle, with risk assessments to check that none of the other species on the reserve would be harmed.

As many as eight Eurasian Beavers could be released near Loch Lomond (Mark Hows).

Now the local community and organisations are to be consulted on the move, with an online talk held on 21 June and other events planned in the coming weeks.

An RSPB Scotland statement said: "Beavers are amazing ecosystem engineers that create habitat such as wet woodland, open water and channels that benefit a whole range of species. While we accept that in certain areas, such as low-lying agricultural land, these activities can be problematic, we believe that, where possible, beavers should be moved rather than resorting to lethal control.

"With over 100,000 ha of vacant, suitable wetland habitat for beavers away from high conflict areas, we hope that translocation projects like Argaty Red Kites and our proposed one at Loch Lomond can, in the future, offer beavers in Scotland a chance to fully realise their potential across the country."

Up to eight beavers would be released – probably a single family or two pairs. Last year the Scottish Government announced that further beaver translocations would be authorised.

The charity hopes to submit an application to NatureScot later this summer, with the beavers potentially being introduced in the autumn.