More beavers are to be introduced near Machynlleth – this time to help the population to recover naturally.

The reintroduction by Wales' Wildlife Trusts is part of the Dyfi Catchment Natural Restoration Project which aims to restore the natural environment of the river and improve water management.

Beavers are considered to play an important role in enriching biodiversity and helping to maintain rivers and wetlands. The Dyfi has been proposed as the first pilot release site in Wales.

Alicia Leow-Dyke, from the Welsh Beaver Project, said: ““Beavers are a sustainable nature-based solution to help tackle the problems our rivers and wetlands face. With this support from the Welsh Government, we’ll be engaging with local communities to explain everything they need to know about beavers and our plans for the future.”

In a statement, The Wildlife Trusts said: “Beavers are known as a ‘keystone species’ because their activities benefit a wide range of other animals and plants that live in rivers and wetlands.

“As beaver activity can also slow down water-flow through river catchments they can also help to alleviate downstream flooding, stabilise water tables, reduce erosion and improve water quality. Tourism benefits can also help support local economies.”

The National Wales: Naturalist Iolo Williams setting the first beaver free in the Dyfi Estuary earlier this yearNaturalist Iolo Williams setting the first beaver free in the Dyfi Estuary earlier this year

A separate project to release beavers into an enclosed environment within the River Dyfi was undertaken in March 2021. Montgomeryshire Wildlife Trust released a small family of beavers to help with habitat management of the enclosure. The new project is intended to reintroduce the species in the wild.

Beavers were once widespread across the Welsh countryside, but due to hunting by humans for their meat, fur and scent glands, they became extinct in the Middle-Ages.

The project also aims to plant trees near to waterways throughout the area to improve wildlife corridors, stabilise riverbanks and slow the flow of the water through the landscape, so is keen to hear from landholders wishing to get involved.

A series of online workshops will be held in January and February 2022 to share project proposals and gather feedback from the local communities. People who live along the Dyfi are encouraged to participate.

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