I noticed the goat pasture seemed a bit wetter than normal.. and sure enough after a brief investigation…. I discovered the beavers have returned. Once again they built a small dam across the old mill foundation and were causing a backup in “Hog Hill Brook” that runs through the farm. You can read my original beaver article here: http://swampyacresfarm.com/BeaverControl.html
At any rate, the construction of this dam was typical. The beavers had again taken both large and small stones (some weighing around 80-100 lbs!) along with mud for the foundation. They also floated one large central log into the breach and then layered it with cut branches and twigs. My previous “beaver deceiver” drainage pipe was still working somewhat. However, it’s limited diameter couldn’t drain the whole swamp… it more or less just delayed the back-up somewhat. On the plus side… the beavers were too stupid to plug it up and just built the dam around it. I will consider adding a few more pipes in the future to see if this improved drainage will keep the swamp clear.
The dam had caused quite a back-up of about two feet of water water across several acres (see before and after photos). Destruction of the dam followed my usual method:
1) Remove the top portion of branches and sticks. As the water drains the current is too strong to do much more. Wait a day or two for the back-up to drain and then return
2) Remove the foundation of rocks and mud
3) Re-dig the whole channel with a shovel
After the water had drained I noticed the beginnings of a beaver lodge that had previously been underwater. This seems to be the same location as the last lodge built several years ago. It is interesting that the beavers continually return to the same spot time and time again to build their dams and lodge. At any rate, the flooding has subsided Hog Hill Brook is again draining properly.