January 4, 2016 7:24 pm
Updated: January 4, 2016 11:30 pm

Leave it to beavers: Toothy rodents fell dozens of trees in Vancouver

WATCH: Beavers have been taking down trees in Stanley Park and Olympic Village. Linda Aylesworth shows us what's being done to deal with this gnawing problem.

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Beavers in Stanley Park and Olympic Village are being blamed for felling dozens of trees near Lost Lagoon and Hinge Park.

The Vancouver Park Board says there is no plan to capture and kill or relocate the beavers, but trees will be wrapped with chicken wire to help reduce the number of trees being taken down.

The number of beavers in the city have been slowly increasing over the years, but officials say there has not been a dramatic change in numbers.

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“I don’t think they’re new in the city, I think they’ve been at Jericho for 10, 20 years,” said Nick Page, a Vancouver Park Board biologist. “But they’ve moved into some areas that we haven’t seen them in a long time. They moved back to Beaver Lake after an absence of 80 years. They moved into Lost Lagoon. They moved back into Still Creek, moving up from the Burnaby Lake system, rather than the Fraser River. So we’re seeing them in different spots.”

At Hinge Park in the Olympic Village, the beavers have built a lodge in the small wetlands.

“Supposedly it’s a pair of beavers, so I suspect they’re going to have baby beavers this spring,” said Page. “That’s just speculation, but based on what the observation is, [these are] mature beavers that have set up home here, so we could be looking at a family of beavers in the next few months.”

When the habitat runs out and population expands, the beavers will move to a different location.

Page said the damage around Lost Lagoon is not as bad as people think. “They’re definitely in some localized areas,” he said. “But it’s very much a natural area where that would be a natural occurrence.”

“It really is a natural part of those wetland ecosystems on the coast, but it’s something different for us in the city.”

PHOTOS: The beavers and their lodge at Hinge Park in Olympic Village:

We conducted a Twitter poll to ask if anything should be done with the beavers, and more than 60 per cent said no. You can still vote by clicking on the tweet below.

© 2016 Shaw Media

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