Beavers cut your trees down, eat the branches but only if the tree falls toward the water. If it did not, the beavers cut another one, and another one and another one.
Their dam gets built, the water spreads out and eats up your property and your neighbors (yes he can sue you because you didn't remove the dam), and you have now lost your trees, lost your crops, sometimes your access road gets flooded, your neighbor is now your enemy...all because the beaver wanted a brand new waterfront condo.
When beavers do this, beavers become a pest...needing control...pest control to their bitter end.
Beavers are big. Adult beavers can weigh 50 pounds. So you need to think about whether you are up to the job.
So what are your choices to control the beavers.
SHOOT THEM: Do it safely if it is legal in your community.
POISON THEM: Because you cannot buy approved poisons, it is a job for a licensed exterminator or trapper who can buy the effective types. Contact information for them is available in your local phone book or from various web sites on the internet.
GAS THE BEAVER: Killing this way is not legal in most places and is not considered effective anyway.
TRAPPING THE BEAVER: This is the choice of almost everyone who is plagued with beavers.
Snare, box, suitcase, kill, leg hold...all are traps that may or my not work with beavers. Remember, they are large rodents and if they are alive when you check the trap, they will be one nasty creature, so be prepared for that.
Traps should be on or near their slide path to the water and the floor of the trap should be covered with dirt or something so they will waltz right into their new temporary home. Bait is limited to Castor oil and popular scented odors.
- Live trap and relocate: Relocation needs to be a long long way away, or I'll be back.
- Live trap and shoot or drown them: Rotting beavers stink. Bury the carcass.
- Hire a professional trapper: They do it for a living. They will catch and remove all the big beaver for you and follow all local laws during their encounters with your pests. Most specialists have a internet web site with the contact information you will need or perhaps one will be listed in your local phone directory.
TEAR OUT THE BEAVER DAM:
- Explosives: The road departments use this method regularly because of the complex interweaving of the branches preclude removing the dam by hand.
- Branch by branch: (NO COST TIP) This is a long hard process and be certain to move the branches away from the site or you may find them reused and in the dam if you did not remove all the beavers living there.
- Mechanical help: A backhoe would be of great help and is one of the ways that cities do the job.
- Burn the dam: In some jurisdictions it is allowed, most places it is not.
TO PREVENT DAMAGE:
- DO: Place wire guards on the base of a tree or trees: Wire mesh known as hardware cloth is usually chosen for this.
- DO: Spray trees with repellent: Deer and bird control repellents are said to work, bad taste is the key that drives them to the next tree, so spray a lot about 4 feet up the tree. Rotten eggs, soaps and blood products also have been used as repellents. These products are available on the internet and a few local store.
- DO: Get an electric fence: Placing it several inches above the ground has been found to be effective in diverting their attention.
- DO: Redesign dams and culverts: Fencing placed in the water and pipes to carry flow through their dams are the essentials of this solution. There are many articles on the internet explaining how to baffle or divert water from their dam blockages.