The scientific monitoring period of the Scottish Beaver Trial came to an end in May 2014. In June 2015, Scottish Natural Heritage published the Beavers in Scotland Report.

On 24 November 2016, the Scottish Government made the landmark announcement that beavers are to remain in Scotland. For more information, please read the joint press release issued by RZSS and the Scottish Wildlife Trust.

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FAQ: How will you track released animals?

The Scottish Beaver Trial has several dedicated staff members whose job it is to monitor and track all the beavers. Tracking the activities of animals in the wild requires a lot of hours, patience, skill and team-work. Members of the Field team spent time in Norway prior to the start of the Trial in order to developing their expertise in beaver monitoring and trapping.

At the time of release all beavers were fitted with a radio transmitting tag, which helped to closely monitor them for the first few important weeks as they settled down in their new homes. These tags were carefully glued onto the animals' rumps and tended to last 4-12 weeks once out in the wild. More recently, adult beavers have been fitted with GPS tags to establish how far the beavers travel over a specific period – and how far they travel from their lodges during seasonal changes.

The beaver families continue to be closely tracked all year-round via a variety of techniques including field sign surveys, direct observation and trapping for health assessments. Beavers are ear tagged and have microchips so individuals can be distinguished.

In addition, the beaver's environment and other species that live there will also be carefully observed and recorded using methods including water quality testing, camera traps and field sign surveys.

Click here to watch video footage of the monitoring and trapping methods carried out by the Field team.



Project partners

The Royal Zoological Society of ScotlandScottish Wildlife Trust
Forestry Commission Scotland

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Comments of support

"The beaver is a missing part of our watery landscapes and has a role to play in the healthy functioning of wetland habitats." - Stephanie Hilborne, Chief Executive for The Wildlife Trusts

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The Royal Zoological Society of ScotlandScottish Wildlife Trust