Other Habitats

Prairie Drifter

Active member
Should be burning, but the Lord is providing much needed rain. While I am delayed from burning, I figured I ought to protect some other habitats. Just last fall I finished a North American Wetland Conservation Act grant remodeling and improving the wetlands on the area. We added 13 acres (50% more) to the existing 8 marshes north and west of the lake. We raised the main dike about 3 feet, extended it about 300 feet, and replaced all of the water control structures. As usual, there are always resistance to some of our intentions. I have been having problems with some pesky beavers voting against my trying to dewater marshes for several weeks. I thought now was an opportune time to address their damage. Took 1 adult and 1 kit out this morning. The den has 2 entrances, so the excavator will be needed once I'm done trapping. Hoping for the other adult and any additional kits the next couple of mornings. I have them causing problems in about 5 more places on my wetlands, so getting this colony controlled isn't the end of it.
 

haymaker

Active member
Should be burning, but the Lord is providing much needed rain. While I am delayed from burning, I figured I ought to protect some other habitats. Just last fall I finished a North American Wetland Conservation Act grant remodeling and improving the wetlands on the area. We added 13 acres (50% more) to the existing 8 marshes north and west of the lake. We raised the main dike about 3 feet, extended it about 300 feet, and replaced all of the water control structures. As usual, there are always resistance to some of our intentions. I have been having problems with some pesky beavers voting against my trying to dewater marshes for several weeks. I thought now was an opportune time to address their damage. Took 1 adult and 1 kit out this morning. The den has 2 entrances, so the excavator will be needed once I'm done trapping. Hoping for the other adult and any additional kits the next couple of mornings. I have them causing problems in about 5 more places on my wetlands, so getting this colony controlled isn't the end of it.
I thought native species were ok. Just curious what is the problem with beavers doing what beavers do.
 

Miforester

New member
Beavers being beavers isn't a bad thing when their population is kept in check. They can have a negative impact on habitat along streams once a dam is established and flooding starts. This generally results in mortality of species that don't like flooded conditions, removing thermal protection of streams resulting in higher water temps and this can result in fish die off. I'm michigan a small increase in stream temp can have an impact on the trout population. The fur prices for beaver have tanked so they are not trapped like they used to be so their populations have grown in many areas, I have had beaver dam a small tributary that resulted in a 40 acre flooded timber that has died. We ended up blowing 2 dams that were probably 20 to 30 ft wide. Hoping stream will come back to life and should be good woodcock habitat. So far haven't seen a return of the beavers. Just my 2 cents.
 

haymaker

Active member
I do not know anything about beaver. I think they got along ok until people showed up. I guess there is a balance and there always has been.
 

Prairie Drifter

Active member
I guess we all know about the little Dutch boy who saved the town by putting his finger in the leak in the dike. These beavers are drilling 16" holes in the very dikes I just spent 6 figures in rebuilding and improving. From the looks of things, their den goes at least half way through the dike that has a 10 foot top. With the rainy season upon us, that means I have 1/2 of a dike or less to hold back high flows and once again need the track hoe in to repair the damage once the beaver are removed. If they all built lodges and ate the trees we really don't care that they have, they make some nice habitat for other wetland critters. When they are damaging expensive structures and endangering more by plugging up the outflow structures with rains forecast, it is time to part company.
 

haymaker

Active member
I guess we all know about the little Dutch boy who saved the town by putting his finger in the leak in the dike. These beavers are drilling 16" holes in the very dikes I just spent 6 figures in rebuilding and improving. From the looks of things, their den goes at least half way through the dike that has a 10 foot top. With the rainy season upon us, that means I have 1/2 of a dike or less to hold back high flows and once again need the track hoe in to repair the damage once the beaver are removed. If they all built lodges and ate the trees we really don't care that they have, they make some nice habitat for other wetland critters. When they are damaging expensive structures and endangering more by plugging up the outflow structures with rains forecast, it is time to part company.
Now that is something that I can relate to. Had to repair damage done by muskrats on a dam last fall.
 

Prairie Drifter

Active member
The other dike we renovated last fall has already sprung a leak where pocket gophers have dug from inside the pool, through the dike, and came out in the bottom of the downslope on the outside of the marsh some 8 feet lower than the dike top. That is about 4 hours with the excavator at $165/hour. This adds up really fast. They are also in the next marsh west of that and in 2-4 ponds causing damage. On the north shore of the lake is a marsh that has at least 10 caved in beaver dens in it. Several grand of expense there. I plan to rip rap that when it has been fixed to end that problem! With the river cutting my area in half, there are always new arrivals moving in. Have to attack the problems before severe damage occurs. Don't always have time to drop everything else and deal. Thus the costs!
 
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haymaker

Active member
The other dike we renovated last fall has already sprung a leak where pocket gophers have dug from inside the pool, through the dike, and came out in the bottom of the downslope on the outside of the marsh some 8 feet lower than the dike top. That is about 4 hours with the excavator at $165/hour. This adds up really fast. They are also in the next marsh west of that and in 2-4 ponds causing damage. On the north shore of the lake is a marsh that has at least 10 caved in beaver dens in it. Several grand of expense there. I plan to rip rap that when it has been fixed to end that problem! With the river cutting my area in half, there are always new arrivals moving in. Have to attack the problems before severe damage occurs. Don't always have time to drop everything else and deal. Thus the costs![/QUOTE

I am going to lay chain link fence on the water side in hopes that will stop hole digging.
 

Prairie Drifter

Active member
Yeah, that's a temporary fix as long as the chain link lasts. I wouldn't use any cheap stuff. You may be able to find used 10 foot fence online. I have the rip rap. I fix it for good and I can quit looking. Plenty of other things to do. If they would just stay in the river, we would get along fine.
 

Prairie Drifter

Active member
Caught numbers 4 and 5 out of this colony this morning. That would be numbers 7 and 8 from the two colonies we have set so far. Hopefully, this will cease the damage they are doing to my marsh dikes!
 
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Prairie Drifter

Active member
Put hole digger #9 out to pasture this morning. He's a chocolate colored one! Been plugging up the marsh I'm trying to drain every night. I expect he may have an accomplice!
 

3car

New member
Hey Troy,

Good to see your still getting stuff done. Our prescribed fire season has been put on hold with the world events as of now. Still have hope tho. Plus we have about 200 acres of high diversity acres that need to be planted.
 

Prairie Drifter

Active member
Yeah, they have us doing mainly training, campground maintenance, patrolling, and office stuff until the 6th. I expect it to get more restrictive then. We are not to do management work, including burns. Our seasonal help is on administrative leave. My list is long, but it'll have to stay that way.
 

3car

New member
Yeah, they have us doing mainly training, campground maintenance, patrolling, and office stuff until the 6th. I expect it to get more restrictive then. We are not to do management work, including burns. Our seasonal help is on administrative leave. My list is long, but it'll have to stay that way.
They had me working the southern border for a month during this whole event. So due to my travel I got a 14 day sentence at home. This teleworking this is rough. Getting anything done is impossible with 5 kids!
 
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