A second pair of beavers released in the Forest of Dean are said to be part of a plan to deal with the flood risk are doing well – and building dams.
Beavers have replaced a pair introduced in 2018, the first in Gloucestershire for 400 years, as part of a larger plan to return the animal to the wild in the United Kingdom.
But they had to be trapped and moved after seven months when it was discovered that they had a tapeworm, a parasitic disease.
The new couple took place on the same site near Lydford in the fall.
Beavers were hunted to extinction in the UK in the 16th century. But efforts have been made to reintroduce them to the wild in areas such as Somerset, Yorkshire and Cumbria, while they have been living in wild areas around the River Tay in Scotland for some years since they fled or were released illegally a few years ago.
Part of the reason behind the schemes was to see if the animals, which cut down trees and dams, streams and rivers and slowed the flow of water, could provide a low-cost solution to the floods.
The first Eurasian beavers released in Gloucestershire were part of a group imported from Bavaria.
Released in a 6.5 hectare (16 acre) enclosure in July 2018, the pair was removed the following February after a positive test for Echinococcus multiocularis (EM). The infected beaver was killed.
Forestry England said their substitutes were captured in various areas of the River Tay in Scotland.
He said that the “necessary health checks” had been carried out and the female had been released in the autumn, followed by the male a few weeks later.
Rebecca Wilson, of Forestry England, said the cameras on the site showed that the beavers were “building dams and felling trees” and “settling in well”.
“The construction of a night dam is creating deep pools of water, slowing down the flow of the stream,” he said.
“Tree felling followed by auburn trees will bring benefits for a variety of wildlife that depends on more complex habitats.”
It is hoped that the animals will help prevent flooding in the area by improving biodiversity and building dams and ponds.
The authority said it would monitor the “hydrological and ecological changes” made by beavers.