Beaver Watches at Loch of the Lowes

This year the Scottish Wildlife Trust has been hosting regular beaver watching events at Loch of the Lowes Visitor Centre and Wildlife Reserve in Perthshire with support from players of People’s Postcode Lottery.

We’ve run ten events since April and they have been a great success, attracting nearly 200 people and proving to be very popular!  The beaver population in Tayside is a great example of how these creatures can naturally establish themselves and flourish in the aquatic habitats where they were present centuries ago.

Beaver Loch of the Lowes (c) Joanna Lindsay

Joanna Lindsay

The aim of the watches is to inform people about the reintroduction of beavers to Scotland, how they benefit our aquatic and woodland ecosystems, and how we can learn to live alongside these animals.  For some people the seemingly sudden appearance of beavers in our country is a strange concept and it can be difficult for people with little understanding of them to come to terms with their presence. Education on this charismatic species is extremely important if we are to accept and welcome beavers back as a natural part of our ecosystems. 

Beaver Watch Loch of the Lowes

As well as being informative, the watches are simply a fantastic opportunity to spot beavers on the loch, which is very exciting for both keen wildlife watchers and those who have never seen these creatures in the wild before, “This is such a great place. I’d never seen a beaver before so tonight has been wonderful!” Since beavers are most active at dawn and dusk, the events take place in the evenings to provide the best chance of seeing them. 

So far we have had 100% success, with beaver sightings at every event, which is great news!  There have even been occasions where a beaver has boldly come up onto the bank next to the Visitor Centre or swam past only a few metres away from the hide, providing some fantastic close-ups, Having had such great success and positive feedback from visitors, we’re confident that next year’s People’s Postcode Lottery Beaver Watches will be just as popular.

I really enjoyed this evening; I learnt so much about beavers and was really inspired by the Trust’s work in re-establishing this animal in our countryside. Thank you!

Written by Joanna Lindsay, Assistant Ranger, Loch of Lowes