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Background Info

Largely due to the efforts of environmental non-government organisations over more than the last 10 years, a scheme for the trial re-introcution of European beavers has taken palce in Knapdale. This trial has been in compliance with the applicable international law and conventions - and operated through a partnership including the Scottish Government nature agency, Scottish Natural Heritage. The trial results are now with the Scottish Government.

European beavers of unknown provenance are already known to exist in Scotland - with a well established population in Tayside and Angus.

The Scottish Government has been involved in discussion and public discourse concerning the beavers for many years, but no decision has been taken as to their final legal status.

2016 has seen reports of (a) the numbers in the Tayside population having reached approximately 150-250; (b) the shooting of over 20 beavers by farmers and landowners in Tayside during 2015 despite the request of the Scottish Government that non-lethal methods be used to manage the species; and (c) several of these beavers were pregnant or had recently given birth according to the autopsies carried out by the Royal Zoological Society of Scotland (http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-scotland-tayside-central-35450532).

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