January 9, 2009

Onlookers hindering large beaver search

The search for a large beaver living somewhere in the English county of Devon has been hindered by curious onlookers, the animal's former owner says.

Derek Gow, who kept the 84-pound beaver at an area animal sanctuary before its escape, said the sudden influx of onlookers has prompted a lengthy delay in the search for the animal, The Daily Telegraph said Friday.

There are still so many people looking for the beaver down the river, we will leave it three to four weeks, said Gow, whose sanctuary is located on a Devon farm. We want to get this done efficiently.

Since escaping from the farm, the oversized beaver has set up a home along the River Tamar and appears to be searching for a female mate, Gow said.

The Telegraph said the sanctuary operator has plans to set up at least six traps in the area, each laced with the scent of a female beaver. During the 16th century, beavers went nearly extinct in Britain due to over-hunting efforts.