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Bebri posta Pasta salu Jelgavā

Island in Jelgava devastated by beavers

In Jelgava, beavers have caused significant damage on Pasta (Postal) Island. Willows, lindens, aspen - more than 20 trees have been permanently lost from the landscape. Now, metal mesh fencing is being installed around the trees to save them, but experts say this will not stop the beavers, Zemgale regional television reported on May 16.

Spring and autumn are the beavers' most active periods, when they set up home and feed. In Jelgava, beavers are not uncommon on Pasta Island, but according to residents, this is the first time that such damage has been seen in the area.

"Those big trees... It's a pity! Look, he's already chewing and gnawing again next door. How can he not have enough!" said Gunta, a resident of Jelgava.

"Last year it was too, but beavers want to eat too. The city should have solved this problem somehow," said Jelgava resident Jevgēnijs.

To prevent beaver damage, the municipality is installing metal mesh fencing around trees. About 100 trees have been fenced in this way.

"Of course, we didn't install nets for all the trees in one day. It was a long process. We are following the spread of the beavers as they gradually moved further down the Lielupe River," said Kurts Melnis, the Jelgava municipality's arboriculture specialist.

Mārtiņš Krūmiņš, a representative of the Jelgava municipal company Pilsētsaimniecība, explained that "beavers live on the banks of the Driksa River and they simply need a living area for each family, they breed and then they expand".

Despite the fact that beaver population has increased, hunting them in the city center is not allowed, and the only way to combat them is to install protective fencing, but according to a beaver expert from the research center Silava Jānis Ozoliņš, the current solution in Jelgava is not effective enough.

"If the wires forming the mesh are thin and if the mesh clings tightly to the trunk, then I have also seen cases where beavers keep trying to gnaw on the tree and even chew the wire," said Silava expert Janis Ozolins.

Summer is a time when the concentration of beavers in one small area can reach up to ten or more individuals, and the urban environment is no nuisance to them either, so all there's left to do is find ways to live with them.

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