Science database


We have gathered decades of scientific research from Great Britain, continental Europe and North America to share with people interested in diving deeper into the world of beavers.

This list of resources is being constantly amended and updated.

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The preferences of the European beaver Castor Fiber for trees and shrubs in riparian zones

Published by: Applied Ecology and Environmental Research

1st November 2017

The study aimed to understand what trees Eurasian beavers prefer in different sites in eastern Poland. Willows, aspens, and alders were most commonly cut. Tree size and proximity to water also influenced the likelihood of a given tree being cut.

Exposure of the Eurasian beaver (Castor fiber) towards hunters during the spring hunt

Published by: University of South-Eastern Norway

1st November 2017

This study in Norway looked at Eurasian beaver behaviour and birthing times and how this overlaps with Norway's hunting season. Researchers found that younger beavers are more likely to be shot, regardless of sex. Pregnant females' movement patterns are similar to other beavers'. However, after giving birth (most commonly in mid-May), females are less active for a time, which enabled them to avoid hunters in the spring season. This may change as climate change affects the seasons.

Restricted cross-scale habitat selection by American beavers

Published by: Current Zoology

25th October 2017

This was the first study to try to understand how North American beavers select their habitat across different spatial scales, using beavers in an area of the USA as a data source. They found that the same factors appeared to influence beavers' decisions to settle in a specific area within the landscape, and a specific site within that area. Beavers here preferred areas with more woody wetland and less open water, for example, which likely gave them easier and safer places to forage.

How effective are buffer zones in managing invasive beavers in Patagonia? A simulation study

Published by: Biodiversity and Conservation

1st October 2017

North American beavers are an invasive species in Patagonia. In this study, a computer simulation model was used to test different management options. The results suggested that a 100 km-wide buffer zone (in which beavers are culled) could slow the spread of beavers but not stop it. The authors suggested that the buffer could still be useful as part of a multi-pronged approach.

Presence of Antibodies to Leptospira spp. in Black-tailed Prairie Dogs (Cynomys ludovicianus) and Beavers (Castor canadensis) in Northwestern Mexico

Published by: Journal of Wildlife Diseases

1st October 2017

This study tested beavers and prairie dogs from an area of Mexico for evidence of a specific bacterium. This bacteria can infect mammals including humans. Whilst no animals showed any clinical sign of the disease, both species were producing antibodies to the bacteria, indicating that the bacteria was around. The text also notes that little is known about beavers in Mexico.

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