A MONTGOMERYSHIRE farming chief has raised concerns over plans to reintroduce wild beavers in the area.

In early 2022, North Wales Wildlife Trust announced its proposal to release a population of wild beavers into the River Dyfi, as part of an effort to reintroduce beavers to Wales that has been in development since 2005.

NFU Cymru is generally opposed to species reintroduction, arguing its resources can be used more effectively to improve existing biodiversity, and at held a meeting at Dolgelynen Farm at which it was argued that man-made flood prevention methods would be more suited to the area.

Dafydd Parry-Jones, NFU Cymru Montgomeryshire vice-chairman, said: “Why do we need to rely on wild animals, who’s habits are at best unpredictable, to do similar roles already effectively undertaken?

"Their work is likely to be in the wrong location and in the case of their dams, not as leaky.

“We know this area; we live and breathe it in fact, and we do not wish for the delicate balance of its ecosystem to be upset by a species we haven’t lived with for centuries. As custodians of the land, we work tirelessly to improve our practices to encourage biodiversity in order to safeguard its future.

“There are species in Wales that are in decline, species that have survived here in harmony with us for many years. Our focus should be on protecting them not introducing an animal that its benefits are not assured.”

North Wales Wildlife Trust supports efforts to reintroduce beavers to Wales, saying: “Beavers are very special animals because they play a vital role in enriching biodiversity by restoring and managing river and wetland ecosystems.

“They are known as a ‘keystone species’ because their activities can benefit a wide range of other animals and plants that live in rivers and wetlands.”

The Wildlife Trust is holding a series of online workshops to allow River Dyfi residents to voice feedback on their proposals.