River Camel Electrofishing Report 2020

Read the results of our electrofishing surveys on the River Camel in 2020.

Camel EF Report 2020

River Fowey Electrofishing Report 2020

Read the results of our electrofishing surveys on the River Fowey in 2020.

Fowey EF Report 2020

River Tamar Electrofishing Report 2020

Read the results of our electrofishing surveys on the River Tamar in 2020.

Tamar EF Report 2020

Our Statement on Beavers

Westcountry Rivers Trust – Position Statement Beavers 2021.

Reintroduction of Beaver

The European Beaver has been re-introduced to our rivers and they will have some significant implications that need objective, impartial investigation to allow all concerned to evaluate the impacts, compensate for losses and control problems efficiently and effectively. 

These implications include but are not limited to:

  • The upstream and downstream cumulative impediment on migratory fish
  • Improving base flows and attenuating flood water and over topping of river water
  • De-stabilising of engineered flood defense levees
  • Flooding of agricultural land
  • Increased debris blocking of culvert trash screens
  • Retention of sediment, nutrients and pollutants within dam sections
  • Improvement in non-dammed spawning gravels through decreased sedimentation
  • Reduction in number of gravel beds due to pooling in dam-based sections
  • General shifts in fisheries populations to more sessile species 

These positive and negative impacts must not be over or under stated and must be delivered in an un-emotive manner to reduce the likelihood of polarising the debate. 

For a successful evaluation of these impacts there must be a robust independent assessment, as well as a mechanism to remove all beavers if the negatives outweigh the positives either in total or within specific catchments or areas within catchments. 

Where conflict exists, there must be clear governance to show how decisions to control populations are made and any control must be adequately resourced and have the necessary derogations in place to enable a swift response.