Dredge Lake beavers run amok

Posted: Monday, November 19, 2007

With all due respect to Rick Carter, the Dredge Lake beavers have unquestionably run amok, and it's time to overcome our laissez-faire attitude toward them.

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In the last seven years, my dog and I have traipsed hundreds of times around the lakes and have witnessed a gradual flooding of the area. The west end of Dredge Lake is now permanently overflowing its bank and washing away the trail between it and Moose Lake.

Moose Lake and Crystal Lake have overflowed their banks recently. And Norton Lake, forget your XtraTuffs, you'll need chest waders to get within a quarter-mile of it.

The beaver-killed cottonwoods are piling up at an alarming rate, and the growing menace of "almost down" trees by the trails is real. Now I admire the plucky beavers as much as the next Juneauite, but it's time to act.

The Dredge Lake area, due to the presence of humans and dogs, is more like a park than a wild ecosystem; fewer natural predators exist to keep the beaver population in check. I am not proposing beaver genocide, but trapping a handful would help. We could give the meat and pelts to charity.

Robert W. Haight


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