North Carolina Wildlife Resources Commission

Beaver Management: Damage to Small Ponds

Option 1: Habitat Modification

Beavers can be discouraged from using small farm ponds by eliminating trees near the bank or on the dam. This technique is effective only if the pond is separated from wooded areas by at least 100 yards of pasture or similar grassy cover.

Option 2: Pond Dam Modification

When beavers inhabit small ponds they frequently burrow into the bank to make dens. When these burrows occur in the dam, the entire dam may be washed out. When constructing pond dams in areas inhabited by beavers or repairing a dam damaged by beavers, they can be discouraged from burrowing into the dam if it is constructed with more gently sloping banks (at most a 3:1 slope). A steeper 2:1 slope on pond banks would encourage burrowing activity on the bank, rather than into the dam.

Option 3: Trapping

Trapping is the most effective and practical method for beaver population control and management. In many cases, landowners need to do no more than contact a local trapper to trap beavers. Many trappers will be happy to trap beavers during the regular trapping season, especially if they receive permission to harvest other furbearers.

Option 4: Shooting

There is an open season for taking beaver with firearms or bow and arrow throughout the year. Permission must be obtained from the owner or lessee of the land on which the beaver is being taken.