Union Urges Membership to Engage with Naturescot Beaver Survey

NFU Scotland is urging its members to participate in what is expected to be the most comprehensive survey of Scottish beaver numbers and their range.

Work on the NatureScot survey is expected to commence on Thursday (1 October) to gather information on the locations of active beaver territories, as well as assessing the health and spread of the overall population.

Since a first assessment in 2012, and subsequent survey work in 2017, it is known that beaver numbers have grown, spreading out from the unauthorised release site on Tayside.  The latest NatureScot survey, the first since the species received protected status, will cover Tayside and the surrounding river catchments, including the Forth, and river systems in the Loch Lomond and Trossachs National Park. NatureScot will be working with experienced beaver surveyors from University of Exeter to search for signs of beavers on foot and by canoe across the area.

For farmers and landowners with land adjacent to rivers, burns or other waterbodies in and around the survey area, contractors may pass across property during the survey. NatureScot will be liaising with NFUS and other stakeholders to keep members informed of survey work.

Farmers and landowners are also encouraged to report the presence of beavers on their land.  They can record sightings of beavers or evidence of beaver activity using the Mammal Society’s Mammal Mapper app, available for both iPhone and Android, or online at  They can also contact NatureScot’s Roo Campbell on 01463 725130 or

NFU Scotland Vice President Martin Kennedy said: “We would encourage as many members as possible to use the mammal mapper service or contact NatureScot if they are aware of, or suspect, beaver activity on their property.  

“We know that beaver numbers and their range are expanding but we must establish an accurate record on both to support the work of the management framework that has been established for beavers in Scotland.  

“Some obvious signs of beaver activity that members can look out for include dammed watercourses, gnawed trees, piles of sticks and mud on the edge of a watercourse (often located below a lodge), general water edge disturbance and river bank erosion.

“This work will be the most in depth study and count to be carried out to date on beavers in Scotland and it is important that farmers and landowners are fully engaged.”  

Notes for Editors

  • Farmers and landowners can help this survey by reporting sightings of beavers or evidence of suspected beaver activity using the Mammal Society’s Mammal Mapper app, available for both iPhone and Android, or online at
  • Farmers or landowners who have concerns about the survey taking place on their land can contact Roo Campbell on 01463725130 or


Contact Bob Carruth on 07788 927675

Author: Bob Carruth

Date Published:

News Article No.: 126/20

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