Problem Beaver Control

Res #: 17-11A
Number: 17
Year: 2011
Midterm: No
Expired: Yes
Responses Received: No
Departments: Saskatchewan Ministry of Environment

WHEREAS problem beavers can result in flooding of productive farmland, pasture, and hay land and the Government of Saskatchewan has included compensation for beaver damage for producers under the Wildlife Damage Compensation Program; and

WHEREAS these problem beavers can also result in serious damage to municipal infrastructure and the ongoing costs associated with beaver management are beyond the financial resources of many municipalities; and

WHEREAS the Province of Manitoba has recognized the need to work with municipal governments and implemented a problem beaver management program;

BE IT RESOLVED that SARM lobby the Government of Saskatchewan to create a problem beaver management program including a beaver bounty; and

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that SARM lobby the Government of Saskatchewan for a proactive program of 50/50 cost-sharing of the infrastructure expenses including, but not limited to, road culvert protection, removal of beaver dams and clean out of blocked culverts on municipal property; and

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that SARM lobby the Government of Saskatchewan to establish a financial incentive for landowners related to the removal of problem beavers and dams; and

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that SARM lobby the Government of Saskatchewan to assume all costs associated with problem beavers and dams on crown lands.

Response from Honourable Dustin Duncan, Minister of Environment:

We understand that a bounty on beavers is being developed by SARM.

Regulations under The Wildlife Act allow the hunting of beaver year round without a license in individual rural municipalities (RM). Interested RMs must supply the ministry with a bylaw requesting this designation and permissions will be granted immediately upon receipt.

We will continue to provide funding to remove beavers and beaver dams located on Crown resource lands when they cause flooding on adjacent private lands or affect municipal infrastructure. RMs wishing to remove obstruction in channels to resolve problems off Crown land, including beaver dam removal, may receive assistance from the Saskatchewan Watershed Authority’s Channel Clearing program. The program is intended to deal with issues on creeks and channels obstructed by trees, brush, deadfall and other obstructions which cause flooding and erosion problems on roads and adjacent lands. The following are eligible for assistance: brush removal and disposal, obstruction removal and disposal, silt bar removal, and silt removal to originally constructed grade lines for ditches constructed under several different Acts or Regulations.

In 2010-2011, the Saskatchewan Watershed Authority (Authority) spent nearly $370,000 on the Channel Clearing Program. Heavy demand for this program in 2011-2012 is anticipated.