A colony of beavers discovered in the River Otter in Devon is to remain in the wild, after a campaign to save the animals was followed by scientists confirming that the animals do not pose any health threat.

The beavers – two adult pairs and one young animal – are the first known to have established themselves in the wild since the animal was hunted to extinction in Britain at least 300 years ago. They are thought to have escaped from captivity.

When the animals’ presence in the river was revealed last year, government officials at Natural England ruled that they should be trapped and removed, ...


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