The undergrowth is overgrown

Beavers are back in the UK and they will reshape the land

Canada Goose Outlet With only GPS coordinates and my phone as a guide, I arrived canada goose coats at my bucolic destination: an unnamed road in the middle of Devon in southwest England, lined canadian goose jacket with thick hedges, low hanging trees and open pastureland for miles around. Canada Goose Outlet

canada goose clearance On a June Canada Goose Parka morning with a thin cover of cloud above, I was here to meet Richard Brazier, an environmental scientist from University of Exeter, and his post doctoral colleague Alan Puttock. They are running a one of a kind outdoor experiment. canada goose clearance

After a short walk through fields and hopping over rusty gates, we came across the 3 hectare plot of land, contained behind a 12 canada goose clearance sale volt electrified canada goose fence.

Five years ago, tall trees such as birch, aspen, and the occasional oak filled this small space, all lining canada goose uk shop the trickle of a highland stream. The thick canopy cast a shadow on the plants below, sapping the life from their leaves.

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Canada Goose Jackets Today, things have changed. The undergrowth is overgrown. canada goose black friday sale Lopsided willow trees dominate, sending hundreds of shoots and stems into the air, each pining for the light above. A thick blanket of green foliage erupts from the peaty soil. Canada Goose Jackets

cheap Canada Goose Flora is blossoming, fauna flourishing. With their long cascade Canada Goose Outlet of pink bells, foxgloves rise high from the uk canada goose outlet purple moor grass below. Butterflies and bees flutter Canada Goose Online from flower to flower. cheap Canada Goose

«The biodiversity is booming,» Brazier tells me as we approach the wire fence through a field of coarse grass and rushes. Since their introduction in March 2011, a breeding pair of these large rodents has been as busy as, well, beavers.

Canada Goose online To walk through this maze of low hanging willow is to walk back through time Canada Goose online

canada goose deals They have raised a family. They have built a lodge to live in and gouged deep canals through the land for getting out and about. And, of course, they have chopped down trees and built a series of 13 dams from sticks and mud. The woodland stream has been, and is being, transmogrified into wetland. canada goose deals

canada goose black friday sale It is easy to see why beaver are known as «ecosystem Canada Goose sale engineers». But it is Brazier and Puttock’s task to find out what these large rodents are engineering exactly. canada goose black friday sale

Canada Goose Parka Although small in size, this site has huge importance. What the pair concludes from their studies here may help decide the fate of the charismatic beaver across the UK. Canada Goose Parka

canada goose clearance sale View image of A beaver dam and its pond canada goose uk black friday (Credit: Alex Riley) canada goose clearance sale

To buy canada goose jacket walk through this maze of low hanging Canada Goose Coats On Sale willow is to walk back through time. A few centuries ago, beavers were bountiful across all of Europe and parts of Asia, numbering up to 400 million individuals.

canadian goose jacket «When this animal existed in the tens of canada goose uk outlet millions in Western Europe and Eurasia, it was a dominant landscape force, in the way that wind and canada goose store water and fire are,» says Derek Gow, a beaver and water vole consultant from Devon. canadian goose jacket

Canada Goose sale These beaver populations are canada goose coats on sale still far from wild Canada Goose sale

canada goose Then they were trapped and killed for Canada Goose online their luxurious pelts and their castoreum; waterproofing oil they secrete from two sacs near their genitals. Catholics even ate beaver as a replacement cheap canada goose uk for fish. canada goose

buy canada goose jacket Localised but extensive extinction followed. canada goose clearance British beavers were the first collective casualty. The last beaver on the islands was shot in 1526 in Scotland. buy canada goose jacket

canada goose coats Centuries passed, the beaver’s influence on the land washed away. Then the species that caused their demise decided to aid in their recovery. Starting in uk canada goose 1899, moratoriums were established. Three decades later, individuals from the eight surviving populations in France, Belarus, Germany, Mongolia, Norway, Russia, and China were reintroduced into new areas and into beaver less countries nearby, planting the species in fresh lands like sown seeds. canada goose coats

The remnant population in Norway, for example, buy canada goose jacket cheap grew from a precariously low 100 or so individuals in 1880 to 7,000 by the 1930s; not only providing cheap Canada Goose ample numbers to spread across the country, but also for reintroductions into neighbouring Sweden and nearby Finland. And over the last decade over 400 years after Canada Goose Jackets the last of the UK’s native beavers vanished the species was reintroduced into catchment sites in Scotland and in Devon. Both trials are ongoing, and have returned parts of Britain to a state that otherwise exists only in distant memory.

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Although these reintroduction efforts are considered a form of landscape «rewilding», these beaver populations are still far from wild.

Before they could be accepted back into the country, every individual had to be checked for the rare tapeworm Echinococcus. If passed on to a dog, then a human, this intestinal parasite could make someone very ill, or even kill them.

And even though tuberculosis actually afflicts badgers, the beavers were checked for the disease, Brazier tells me. «Beavers. Badgers. In some people’s minds it’s the same animal or it will represent the same risk to their livestock.».

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