How to Get Rid of a Beaver

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Beavers are reddish- brown, black or yellowish-brown.
Beavers are reddish- brown, black or yellowish-brown. (Image: Jupiterimages/Photos.com/Getty Images)

Beavers are the largest rodents found in the United States, as stated by United Wildlife Control. (see reference 1) Adults are generally 35 to 60 pounds and up to 35 inches long. The tails can grow to lengths of 20 inches. As with other rodents, beavers feel the need to gnaw often to wear down their teeth. The gnawing can wreak havoc on trees in your landscape. The dams they build may contaminate water supplies or cause bridges and roads to wash out. (see reference 1)

Things You'll Need

  • Beaver trap
  • Gun
  • Chicken wire (optional)
  • Trapping permit (optional)

Look for dams consisting of mounds of mud and piles of wood and other debris. This indicates the presence of beavers. This is most often in or near bodies of water. (see reference 1) Also, note any gnawed rings around the trunks of trees on your property. This exposes the trees to risk of disease and death.

Purchase a beaver trap from an animal control agency, sporting goods or hardware or home supply store. Read the tips carefully that come with the trap. If the trap is not set or baited properly, the beaver may trip it and then carefully avoid any further traps you set. (see reference 1) Once you trap the beaver, transport it to an area at least 10 miles away. Never release it into the same body of water where you captured it. (see reference 2)

Hire a professional trapper if you don't want to trap or transport the rodent yourself.

Call a licensed exterminator. Approved poisons are not available for consumers, therefore hiring a licensed professional is the only way to use this method legally. (see reference 3)

Shoot the beaver if necessary. Check with local law enforcement, because this is illegal in many areas. (see reference 3)

Tips & Warnings

  • Wrap chicken wire around the trunk of any trees you want to protect from beaver gnawing. Or make a steel fence out of the wire to set around trees. (see reference 2)
  • Check with your local animal control agency. A permit may be necessary to trap beavers in your area.

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