There are no chemical repellents or toxicants (poisons) registered for controlling beavers in Kentucky. Individual high-value shade or ornamental trees can be protected from beavers by wrapping them with 1/4- or 1/2-inch hardware cloth to a height of four feet. Small areas around culverts, drains and ponds in urban areas can be fenced using netwire with small mesh wire.

Another method of discouraging beavers is to install a device to manipulate the water level of a pond. This can be accomplished by installing a three-log drain (Figure 3) or wire mesh culvert that the beavers cannot plug. Lowering the water level in the summer encourages wild or planted foods to grow, providing excellent habitat and food for waterfowl.

One innovative way to discourage beavers is the use of a high tensile electric fence (Figure 4). Stake a portable battery or solar-powered charging unit some distance from a run (slide) or a hole knocked into the dam. If you are placing the wire across a slide, mow or trim the vegetation very close to the ground. Finally, string a single strand of wire three inches above the ground or water's surface so the beavers will strike it as they pass through the slide or attempt to repair the hole in the dam. This electric shock acts to repel the animals; if they are shocked enough, they will move to another area.

Beaver dam

Large beaver dam

Daily tearing out dams and removing dam construction materials with dynamite may cause a colony or individual beaver to move. This is very dangerous and not recommended. Even if this procedure is effective, the beavers may move into a new area and become even more troublesome. It is against the law in Kentucky to destroy or harm a beaver lodge or den. Contact the Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources or USDA-APHIS-ADC in Louisville for technical guidance before destroying dams.