Beavers are set to be released in London in the UK’s most significant urban reintroduction, the Guardian can reveal. It is hoped the rodents, which went extinct in the UK 400 years ago after being hunted for their fur and an oil they produce, will be brought to a site in Tottenham. While most of the north London area is built-up – and the home of a football stadium – it has areas well suited to beavers, including a large marshland. Citizen Zoo, a rewilding group aimed at bringing nature to urban areas, is behind the project. Volunteers from the group recently crowdfunded a release of 200 water voles in Richmond, south-west London. A beaver expert involved with the project said: “The Tottenham site is going ahead, and we are looking out for more,” adding he wants to “beaver up” London. Those hoping to release beavers have to get a licence from Natural England , the government quango in charge of all matters to do with nature and the countryside. Ben Goldsmith, a non-executive board member at the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs who has financed many of the beaver releases in the UK, welcomed the plans. […]

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