BEAVER BURROWING

Protect trees and vegetation from beaver browsing.

Beavers eat a very wide range of vegetation, therefore beaver impacts vary greatly with species, availability and distance from the watercourse. Trees in the immediate riparian zone may need protection if they are a favourite specimen, sentimental trees, crop trees or potentially those that may cause damage if felled. If trees need protection this can be done individually or in stands, such as fruit orchards. 

Methods of Tree Protection
Tree Wrapping
  • Wrap the tree with wire-mesh at least 1m high leaving 15cm space between the mesh and the trunk for the tree to grow.
  • Pin the mesh wrap into the ground.
  • Test the wrap to make sure it’s secure.
Stand Protection
  • It may be more cost-effective to fence beavers out of a stand of trees.
  • Fencing should be 1.20m in height and include a mesh skirt, facing the water, to prevent beavers from gaining access by digging under the fence.
  • Mesh size should be less than 10cm x 10cm to prevent kits from entering.
Tree Painting
  • Mix 200g of fine sand (1mm grain size) with 1 litre of exterior based latex paint.
  • Apply paint to base of tree up to a height of at least 90cm from the ground.
  • Check the paintwork annually and apply a new layer as necessary.
Additional Tips and Considerations
  • Any protection should extend higher than a beaver on its back legs
  • Buttress roots of a tree also need to be protected.
  • Flexible wire such as ‘chicken mesh’ should be avoided as beavers can manipulate it.
  • Mesh size needs to be small enough to prevent beavers from gnawing between gaps
  • Remove any moss or lichens and let the tree trunk dry before painting.
  • Painting is more difficult on rough barked trees.
  • Any fencing in a flood zone needs to be carefully considered.
  • Tree removal does not deter beavers.
Our Team are Here to Help
Dr Roisin Campbell-Palmer
Restoration Manager
Robert Needham
Restoration Coordinator
Chris Jones
Communities Director

Our restoration team have worked on beaver reintroduction projects across Europe and are highly experienced in beaver management and conflict resolution. If you own or manage land affected by beavers email them at management@beavertrust.org for FREE advice or to request a site visit.

Other Areas of Management
Beaver Damming

Beavers build dams for protection from predators, but sometimes these dams can cause flooding issues for people. There are a number of management techniques which can be employed to resolve this.

Beaver Burrowing

Where the bans of a watercourse allow, beavers will excavate burrows instead of building lodges. This can cause bank erosion and undermine infrastructure.

Trapping & Lethal Control

As a last resort trapping & lethal control may be considered where beaver activities are impacting land-use, infrastructure and livelihoods.