Plans to bring the beaver back to Purbeck

The environmental group, Planet Purbeck has teamed up with the National Trust to host an open meeting to discuss the possibility of reintroducing beavers to Purbeck.

The talk via Zoom, dubbed ‘Beaver Fever’ and scheduled for 7 pm on Wednesday 24th February 2021, will look at the chance to bring beavers back to Purbeck, 400 years after they were hunted to extinction in Britain.

Purbeck Heathland

If it gets the go-ahead the beavers will be released into a remote part of Purbeck heathland like this

Carefully-managed phased return of the captivating water engineers

Speakers from the National Trust and the Devon Wildlife Trust will explain how they are working towards a positive and carefully-managed phased return of the captivating water engineers. It follows years of collaboration with local landowners, farmers and other interested parties.

If the scheme gets government approval, the first pair of beavers could be released in a remote part of the Purbeck peninsula.

Earlier this month, a pair of beavers were released into an enclosed site in west Dorset as part of a Dorset Wildlife Trust project.

Watch the film of the beaver release in west Dorset

Meeting in March on low impact tourism

Planet Purbeck, which now boasts a 400-strong membership despite being founded only five months ago, is hosting a second meeting in March on low impact tourism.

This will look at how Purbeck can attract visitors who are keen on ecology and wildlife without spoiling Purbeck’s natural beauty and open spaces.

Presenters will include speakers from the National Trust, the Global Sustainable Tourism Council, RSPB Arne, the Travel Foundation, Swanage Town Council and leading marketing organisations. This is scheduled for 7 pm on Tuesday 16th March 2021.

Swanage seafront overlooking Prince Albert Gardens

“Becoming the area’s main forum for discussion and action on environmental issues”

Planet Purbeck’s Heidi Florence said:

“There is bound to be a range of views on both topics and we feel it is important to learn from one another and move forward.

“For example, there will be many who would be really excited to see the return of beavers but others who might have concerns.

“We think Planet Purbeck is becoming the area’s main forum for discussion and action on environmental issues. We would like as many people as possible to attend our open nights – and we think they will be amazed at what is going on around them behind the scenes.

“The meetings will be on Zoom, which we are using as a popular and successful alternative to large hall gatherings under current restrictions.”

Join the meeting

Those wishing to attend the open nights should go to Planet Purbeck’s website and join up for free. A Zoom link will then be sent out via email for the events.

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