Wild Intrigue | Bark, mud & paddle-tails: camera trapping Beavers
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Bark, mud & paddle-tails: camera trapping Beavers

There it was – that tell-tale muddy trail we had been searching for, crossing the riverbanks as prominent as we had hoped. Leading from the water, it was clear this muddy path had been gently carved into the riverbank by the busy shuffling of mammalian feet – but whose?

There were no tracks in the mud (we will discover why later), so we could only make predictions of the species that used this route. Otter Lutra lutra, or (fingers crossed) Eurasian Beaver Castor fiber?

Looking around the area we discovered more signs indicating the presence of Beavers – although as you might imagine, these are in abundance here at Bamff Estate! Bark chippings, felled and gnawed trees, in fact the entire habitat we were standing in had been entirely altered by these ecosystem engineers.

So we set about installing one of our Bushnell HD LiveView trail cameras, securing it onto an installation pole in the shallow water, next to some fallen deadwood to prevent it from deterring any animals from passing.

We were one day into our Eurasian Beavers site recce, so were really excited at the thought of getting camera trap footage of a Beaver – especially to offer a glimpse to those who join us next year of what they can expect. Just two days later, we collected our trail cameras, and yes! There were clips waiting for us!

Here is a glimpse of what we captured…

If you watch the footage carefully, you can see why the paddle-like tail prevented us from finding any tracks across the whole site.

We’re thrilled to now offer our expertise, knowledge and guidance to the Scottish Wild Beaver Group and the Bamff Estate, and are excited that our Expeditioneers will also have the opportunity to contribute to these through surveys and media.

Look out for our 2018 Eurasian Beaver Expedition dates coming soon – join our e-newsletter to make sure you don’t miss out on their release!

Heather-Louise

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