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360° Scottish beaver trail

Join us on a 360° loch-side walk in Knapdale to look for signs of beavers, an animal which has been successfully reintroduced to Scotland.

For the first time in over 400 years the forests of Argyll in western Scotland are now home to the Eurasian beaver. In the first official reintroduction of a native mammal to the UK, four families of beavers were released onto the lochs of Knapdale where they quickly began building lodges, damming rivers and felling trees.

The beaver is what are known as a keystone species, an animal which disproportionately impacts the environment in which it lives. Not only do the mammals have the ability to rapidly alter the ecosystem to benefit themselves, but the changes they cause also benefit countless other species from amphibians and fish to insects, birds and plants. 

In the 360° video above, join Pete Creech, Environmental Interpretation Officer at the Heart of Argyll Wildlife Organisation, as he takes us around one of the original release sites in Knapdale and tells us more about these ecosystem engineers.  

Want to make your own wildlife discoveries?

There are many ways to get involved with the nature where you live, from joining local wildlife groups to taking part in mass citizen science surveys or just using specialist apps to identify and log what you see around you. Check out our Take Part pages for more ideas and information on on how to get involved.

We hope you enjoyed this article…

... or that it helped you learn something new. Now we're wondering if you can help us.  

Every year, more people are reading our articles to learn about the challenges facing the natural world. Our future depends on nature, but we are not doing enough to protect our life support system.  

British wildlife is under threat. The animals and plants that make our island unique are facing a fight to survive. Hedgehog habitats are disappearing, porpoises are choking on plastic and ancient woodlands are being paved over. 

But if we don't look after nature, nature can't look after us. We must act on scientific evidence, we must act together, and we must act now.

Despite the mounting pressures, hope is not lost. Museum scientists are working hard to understand and fight against the threats facing British wildlife. 

For many, the Museum is a place that inspires learning, gives purpose and provides hope. People tell us they 'still get shivers walking through the front door', and thank us for inspiring the next generation of scientists.

To reverse the damage we've done and protect the future, we need the knowledge that comes from scientific discovery. Understanding and protecting life on our planet is the greatest scientific challenge of our age. And you can help.  

We are a charity and we rely on your support. No matter the size, every gift to the Museum is critical to our 300 scientists' work in understanding and protecting the natural world.  

From as little as £2, you can help us to find new ways to protect nature. Thank you.