The following information is based on legal advice received by SNH. It is not a definitive interpretation of the law, which only a Court can provide.
Beavers are not presently protected in Scotland and it remains an offence to release or allow to escape from captivity a beaver without a licence from SNH.
Possession of a beaver, alive or dead, which has been taken from the wild in a European Union Member State, is an offence without a licence from SNH.
Those studying or watching beavers should ensure that their presence does not result in the disturbance of neighbouring protected species of wildlife or their habitats
Landowners wishing to control beavers may do so, provided that conditions on firearms certificates are adhered to and that the beaver is not subsequently taken into their possession. In effect, this means that legal beaver control is not straightforward. Please use the contact form elsewhere on this page, or contact SNH directly for more information. In the longer term, it is possible that practical mitigation will be more successful than removal of an animal.
It is important to us that valuable information is not lost if animals are controlled. We would urge anyone who feels that beaver control is the only possible solution to contact SNH prior to taking any action.
Contact details :
Scottish Natural Heritage
tel: 01463 725363
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