Beaver dams threatened to flood a section of Highway 101 in Egmont, but thanks to two days of volunteer efforts, the road is now safe — and the beavers are, too.
Members of the Furbearer Defenders group Lesley Fox, Jim Atkinson and Adrian Nelson and Friends of Animals member Dave Shishkoff travelled to Egmont on July 31 and Aug. 7 to install two pond levellers and some exclusion fencing to appease the beavers and protect the roadway.
Pond levellers consist of a long, wide pipe that runs through the problematic beaver dam, capped with wire cages on each end to allow the water to keep flowing and keep debris from clogging the pipe.
Beavers don’t like the sound of running water; however, the end of the pipe is so far from their dam they continue to build, unaware of the source of the leak.
The beavers are left happily building and the water continues to flow so there’s no flooding, Fox explained.
“The resident in Egmont with the acreage really liked the beavers being there. The habitat they created was bringing in elk, which he really loved, and even when we were there we saw gorgeous song birds,” Fox said. “So he didn’t want to harm the beavers, but it was a little too close for comfort. The dam was built near the roadway.”
The resident, who didn’t return requests for interview by Coast Reporter deadlines, called the Furbearer Defenders for assistance, Fox said, noting they were happy to help.
“The Sunshine Coast has really embraced the pond levellers and it’s really catching on. We’re getting some interest from municipalities and other organizations that are looking at taking it back to their communities to help out,” Fox said, noting Shishkoff was visiting from Connecticut to gain experience in pond-leveller installation.
The two-day work party to install the pond levellers and some exclusion fencing to keep beavers away from the highway will cost the landowner a little over $1,000 for the materials used.
To find out more or to request help with problem beavers in your area, you can contact the Furbearer Defenders in Vancouver at 604-435-1850 or visit their website at www.furbearerdefenders.com.