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Beavers
#525967 09/16/20 12:45 PM
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Hello all, been a while since I've been on the site.

So I've had an interesting year with my pond. The last couple of years I know there was a beaver on my property as I saw a couple of trees get whacked every now and then. Never saw a beaver but know he was around, and there was an old beaver hut at the end of my pond. Never really cared, because he wasn't causing an issue as I saw it. Well 219, I started to really see a change. .I have a far number of cattails around 25% of my pond. One day mid 2019, it dawned on me they were gone. In retrospect I think they were diminishing at a rate that I never really noticed it, as I usually don;t get to that end of the pond, no trails there yet. Then I started noticing more trees down, and many more started but not finished. I kind of marveled at which trees were hit and where. Although random to my eyes, it seemed as though he had a plan to clear small areas to let underbrush grows. ( I may just be imagining this though ) He did help me a lot, with wind-downed trees, he cleanup up all the branches so I could easily cut up trunks.

Any how, my image of the beaver changed one day walking the edge of a tree line when I realized he had moved to the outside edge of trees where the tall grasses met the woods, up and away from the pond. I stopped, and realized I was in a killing field he had set up for me. All sorts of 12 to 18 inch spikes all around me, formally trees, waiting for me to trip and be impaled in the tall grass. Perhaps never to found, working in conjunction with the coyotes. That beaver was now out to kill me. I slowly walked out. This was fall 2019.

Game on. Pond froze over, and my son and I developed a plan to trap. We are not trappers. We tried this and that, to no avail. We then realized why late winter early Spring made it easy. We finally found his tunneled holes into the bank and 10 yards into the woods. I found one, by falling into it, and nearly twisting my knee in a position is was not meant to travel.. We also realized in this time frame for certain, there was more than one. We trapped five beavers this spring. I had no idea, I thought maybe two. I guess I should know what happens when you have two beavers.

Two weekends ago, I just saw another swimming the pond. For sure one more to go.

I had read previously the damage they can do to a shoreline with tunneling. It can be a mess and treacherous, but had no idea until I saw it. The trees taken and their position on forty acres is sure interesting. Nature is an interesting thing to watch.

Last edited by North40; 09/17/20 07:27 AM.
Re: Beavers
North40 #525969 09/16/20 02:17 PM
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Despite all the negatives you're facing from the beavers, I'm sure learning to trap them and getting to the point of finally catching some was a great bonding experience for you and your son.

Typical beaver colony is the adult pair, this year's offspring and last years offspring. In rare cases where some of the 2nd year offspring will hold over for one more year, but usually those leave sometime during that second summer and find their own area to start a colony. That leaves you with a typical colony of something like 4-8 beavers, so hopefully the one you saw was just a holdover from the previous family and you nearly have them eradicated. Do you, by chance, recall the size of the beavers you caught and the one you saw?

Re: Beavers
North40 #525971 09/16/20 02:50 PM
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Quote
That beaver was now out to kill me.
Ooooh, I've seen that movie too.


"Live like you'll die tomorrow, but manage your grass like you'll live forever."
-S. M. Stirling
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Re: Beavers
lmoore #525974 09/16/20 04:22 PM
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Originally Posted by lmoore
Despite all the negatives you're facing from the beavers, I'm sure learning to trap them and getting to the point of finally catching some was a great bonding experience for you and your son.

Typical beaver colony is the adult pair, this year's offspring and last years offspring. In rare cases where some of the 2nd year offspring will hold over for one more year, but usually those leave sometime during that second summer and find their own area to start a colony. That leaves you with a typical colony of something like 4-8 beavers, so hopefully the one you saw was just a holdover from the previous family and you nearly have them eradicated. Do you, by chance, recall the size of the beavers you caught and the one you saw?

Good information on the colony, news to me. Yes, my son and I had a good time with it. Turns out he was the brains of the pair, not surprisingly.

First one was good sized, 40-50 pounds I'd guess easily. One a bit smaller, then the others smaller yet. The one I saw swimming was good sized, but not as large as the first trapped. I'm going hunt him this weekend. I've seen it twice now near sunset.

On a side note, they really cleaned up my cattails. I haven't decide yet it that is a good or bad thing. Do the cattails use more nutrients during the summer than they leave after dying off in the winter??

Re: Beavers
North40 #525979 09/16/20 09:30 PM
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I wanted to make a beaver joke, but I didn't think anyone wood get it.

Re: Beavers
North40 #525988 09/17/20 07:30 AM
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Originally Posted by North40
Good information on the colony, news to me. Yes, my son and I had a good time with it. Turns out he was the brains of the pair, not surprisingly.

First one was good sized, 40-50 pounds I'd guess easily. One a bit smaller, then the others smaller yet. The one I saw swimming was good sized, but not as large as the first trapped. I'm going hunt him this weekend. I've seen it twice now near sunset.

On a side note, they really cleaned up my cattails. I haven't decide yet it that is a good or bad thing. Do the cattails use more nutrients during the summer than they leave after dying off in the winter??

So hopefully that last one is the other adult and you'll be done with your issue after your hunting trip smile Unfortunately, they left a nice set up if another young pair finds your pond next summer. They'll be easier to remove (hopefully) if that happens though, a beaver pushing 50 pounds has been around a while.

I don't know for sure on the cattails but I would think most of what they use in the summer goes right back in the winter. Could be wrong there though.

Re: Beavers
North40 #525992 09/17/20 07:58 AM
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I thought I only had one...but it was two, three, four, five. Same deal as you.

Re: Beavers
lmoore #526004 09/17/20 12:47 PM
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Originally Posted by lmoore
So hopefully that last one is the other adult and you'll be done with your issue after your hunting trip smile Unfortunately, they left a nice set up if another young pair finds your pond next summer. They'll be easier to remove (hopefully) if that happens though, a beaver pushing 50 pounds has been around a while.

I don't know for sure on the cattails but I would think most of what they use in the summer goes right back in the winter. Could be wrong there though.

They truly cleared out everything of the cattails, roots and all, gone. Nothing came back in that area this year. They took out quite a bit of root systems from some of the Lilly pads as well. (Those are quite the roots) The beaver I saw a couple weeks ago, was chewing on one of those pulled up from the bottom.

I am sizing up the house they built, not sure how to get rid of that easily.

Re: Beavers
North40 #526012 09/17/20 06:03 PM
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Explosives work pretty well

Re: Beavers
North40 #526028 09/18/20 06:49 AM
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Killum all. I have/had a spring filled creek on the back of my property. Beavers moved in on the place above me and stopped up the creek. In my arid area of Texas, that's not good. They took down some good sized oaks so the neighbor asked me to take care of them. I did but not sure it was legal.

Beavers only build dams in flowing water. When they take up residence in a pond, they dig under the bank for a home. If they pick the dam, you're hosed if you don't take action.

When I say "had", we got a 4 year drought that dried up the springs that flowed for many, many years. Now, it is a creek only as long as the rains keep coming. I doubt that the water table will ever replenish. It is also a recipient from one of my ponds Spring overflow and Bluegills plus Green Sunfish are in it. I generally toss in food when I go on a 4 wheeler to feed in the 1/4 catfish/green sunfish pond.


It's not about the fish. It's about the pond. Take care of the pond and the fish will be fine. PB subscriber since before it was in color.

Without a sense of urgency, Nothing ever gets done.

Boy, if I say "sic em", you'd better look for something to bite. Sam Shelley Rancher and Farmer Muleshoe Texas 1892-1985 RIP
Re: Beavers
Dave Davidson1 #526142 09/21/20 10:05 AM
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Dave, definitely working towards that goal, total eradication. Had I known then, what I know now, I would had started right away. I think I found a new slide in use this past weekend.. When I get back next weekend I'll set a trap in the water there.

My pond is self contained by springs, no inlet or outlet. Very rarely any fluctuation.

Re: Beavers
North40 #526185 09/22/20 11:39 AM
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I have a few that live in the pond downstream from me . They pop in and eat a few weeds and Lilly pads( don’t have many), so far no damage to worry with so I won’t kill them till things change. Wish they would eat some big bass!


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