18 animals have been killed so far: the beaver is on the mend
Created: 09/29/2022, 19:13
By: Catherine Brumbauer
The work of a beaver: This photo was taken near Oberau in April this year.
© District Office
Due to the high population - Most of the withdrawals throughout Bavaria take place in the district of Garmisch-Partenkirchen.
County - You gradually conquer the last free spots on the waters of the county.
On the Loisach between Eschenlohe and Oberau.
Further downstream around Grainau.
On the Ammer between Altenau and Unterammergau.
Everywhere beavers are hard at work, gnawing the bark off trees, building dams and castles from the peeled wood, twigs and branches.
"There is a very high beaver population in the district of Garmisch-Partenkirchen," stressed district administrator Anton Speer (free voters) again.
Beavers have been found particularly frequently around Lake Staffelsee for years.
However, the number of rodents has remained fairly constant there in recent years.
The reason: Since 2018, it has been permitted to set up traps to kill the animals in several places on the south bank.
Speer reveals: The district has one of the highest withdrawal numbers in all of Bavaria.
The district administrator also emphasizes that the beaver is one of the strictly protected species.
"Nevertheless, withdrawals are possible where danger is imminent." Sensitive areas are, for example, the vicinity of flood protection systems or cycling and hiking trails, where it can be dangerous if a sharp, gnawed tree branch breaks off and falls on the path.
The biggest problem, however, are flooded agricultural meadows from which the water cannot drain.
However, there are “in various cases possibilities for compensation” for the farmers here, explains district office spokesman Stephan Scharf.
He also refers to fences and tree guards as effective devices.
For example, the athletes from the Garmisch-Partenkirchen Golf Club have fenced off the trees on their course in Oberau.
Beavers were also active on the pitch.
Exactly this disturbance of the beavers contributes to the fact that the animals move into new areas.
Young beavers look for new territories in the district every year because they leave their parents at the age of two.
"These still fairly inexperienced animals are often in locations that are not very suitable for a whole beaver family," explains Scharf.
They are seen, for example, in agricultural ditches, fishponds, boathouses or shafts of drainage pipes.
If a free, suitable spot is found, the beavers mate and build a new castle.
There are currently about 150 of these in the district, inhabiting 550 beavers.
It is by no means always the case that a family only occupies one castle.
Wildlife cameras have caught male beavers at up to three different castles on the southern shore of Lake Staffelsee.
"That makes it interesting to observe the population at Staffelsee," says Scharf.
With the repeated removals, the reproduction of the animals there was brought under control.
"The families have now recovered from this," explains Scharf.
Ultimately, the spokesman for the district authorities emphasizes that people have to see how they can come to terms with the beaver.
And he suggests that if a hot, dry summer like this repeats itself, the rodent can help protect crop cultivation in the fields.
"It is conceivable that with increasing drought due to climate change, the beaver dams could help to maintain a sufficiently high groundwater level during the summer months in the coming years."