Living with Beaver

Methow Beaver Project assists landowners in addressing these coexistence challenges through education, various co-existence strategies, as well as physical services. We strive for a win-win solution for beavers and people every time.

Living with Beaver

Beavers provide innumerable benefits to stream and wildlife habitat as well as to humans such as increased water storage and water quality, however, their work can cause unwanted property loss, damage or change. The loss of ornamental trees, agricultural products such as fruit trees or alfalfa, or the flooding of a road, home or pasture is often more than a landowner wants to live with.

While we can’t go back in time and don’t expect everyone to tolerate beavers flooding of lowlands or felling of apple trees, we have a coexistence bag of tricks that helps reduce the negative side effects that occasionally accompany coexisting with beaver.

Are beavers damaging valuable trees?
Fencing or sand paint can protect those trees while living with the ecosystem benefits of beavers. Electric fencing can be an excellent deterrent to larger treed areas such as orchards.

Is flooding from beaver dam building threatening your home, agricultural land or roads?
Flow control devices or culvert protectors may be the answer to successfully managing the water while enjoying the security of increased ground water, increased hay and orchard production and improved natural pest management from birds and bats that beaver habitat can bring.

Are beaver dams making it difficult for endangered salmonids to utilize your restored floodplain or side channel?
With human development in our river floodplains, these once complex systems have been simplified and one beaver dam in a single side channel can reduce or prevent adult fish passage. If high seasonal flows or deep jump pools below a beaver dam don’t exist in the system, then flow control devices with built in fish passage may be the simplest answer to meeting restoration priorities. Beavers are known to coexist with salmon species and even provide essential rearing, overwintering and climate refugia habitat but context is everything. If the system is lacking complexity, beaver management strategies may help resolve the issue.

Have you tried all the coexistence strategies we offer and find that beaver activity is still a barrier to success?
Translocation is an option for beaver challenges but often short term for the landowner and risky for the beaver. When beavers have chosen an area to live in, they make improvements to the system. When a previously occupied site is vacated by human removal of beavers, other beavers quickly find the improved habitat and happily utilize it.

We have found that most landowners can agree that they would not mind living with beavers if their activity wasn’t damaging or threatening their property. Let us help you find the right beaver management solutions for your property and restoration site challenges.

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Living with Beaver

Beavers provide innumerable benefits to stream and wildlife habitat as well as to humans such as increased water storage and water quality, however, their work can cause unwanted property loss, damage or change. The loss of ornamental trees, agricultural products such as fruit trees or alfalfa, or the flooding of a road, home or pasture is often more than a landowner wants to live with.

Historically, beaver’s industrious activity was not limited by human development but rather shaped it, keeping communities on higher dry ground but providing access to the incredible bounty that beaver complexes produce.

Once beavers were extirpated from the Pacific Northwest by the early 1800’s, humans began to lose the understanding and vision of a beaver occupied landscape.

While we can’t go back in time and don’t expect everyone to tolerate beavers flooding of lowlands or felling of apple trees, we have a coexistence bag of tricks that helps reduce the negative side effects that occasionally accompany coexisting with beaver.

Methow Beaver Project assists landowners in addressing these coexistence challenges through education, various co-existence strategies, as well as physical services. We strive for a win-win solution for beavers and people every time.

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  • Actionable, "How to" information.  Tips, techniques utilized by MBP.  (high level, 2-3 sentences on each technique. Fencing, exclosures, flow devices, etc.)
  • Call to Action - Contact X for consultation
  • Quotes from Landowners living with beaver benefits

Coexistence Services & Cost Sharing

Methow Beaver Project assists landowners in addressing these coexistence challenges through education, various co-existence strategies, as well as physical services. We strive for a win-win solution for beavers and people every time.

Techniques we may consider, depending on your situation may include:
-Flow device design, installation and maintenance contracts.
-Tree wrapping and painting
-Temporary electric fencing for deterrence
-Relocating beavers, as a last resort