Scottish Natural Heritage recently confirmed that 87 beavers, roughly one fifth of Scotland’s entire population, were killed under licence in 2019 despite being a protected species. At least ten of the animals were less than a year old.
Eurasian Beavers were native to Britain for centuries before being hunted to extinction 300 years ago. New, free-living populations became established on Tayside some time in the early part of this millennium and the Beaver finally gained Protected Species status in Scotland in May 2019.
However, SNH issued 45 beaver control licences to land managers in only the first 8 months of protection, of which 16 were used for killing and 19 for dam removal.