Rīga prepares for beaver battle

Rīga municipality plans to dedicate tens of thousands of euros to reducing the number of beavers to the “necessary number” in the city, reported Latvian Television's 4. studija on February 10.

Riga City Council (RD) Housing and Environment Department specialists estimate that the demolition of one beaver dam costs an average of €650. Over three years, Rīga City Council has invested €27,000 in countering the damage caused by beavers.

Mārcis Zariņš, the chief expert of the Water Resources Division of the RD Environment Department, told the broadcast: “The last case was on the Šmerlis River, when a very substantial dam had been built, and in principle, the flooding went even to Dreiliņi. It's several kilometers."

Beaver activity has started to pose threat to municipalities and private properties. The Rīga City Council has decided to contact hunters that could reduce the number of animals. The contract for catching beavers is in force until the end of next year. 

“It is not planned to catch all the beavers in Riga, it is intended to reduce them to the required number,” said the municipality spokesman.

According to the laws and regulations, no shooting is allowed in the city area, so beavers will be trapped.

The municipality estimates that catching and removing one beaver will cost around €500. This means that the hunters will have to deal with at least 60 beavers as part of the procurement. It is also promised that the Opera Canal beavers will be left alive.

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