Trapping season in its final days

BIG RAPIDS - Beaver trapping runs until April 23 in the Lower Peninsula.

"They extended the season," for beavers, DNR wildlife biologist Pete Kailing said. "Otter season is closed. So try to avoid that. See the (DNR) digest for details.

"The beaver population is expanding statewide including in west Michigan. I've been getting a record number of complaints from last year. Pelt prices are down. Trappers are not getting at them aggressively as they might be."

Beavers are a territorial creature, Kailing noted.

"Beavers don't tolerate each other once they have a breeding territory set up," he said. "The two-year old beavers move on and have to set up their own home. They will exploit any little pond or water body and try to make a home out of it. Beavers can surprise you where they show up in little puddles of water.

"If they don't have enough to eat or enough water to feel safe, they'll move on. We've lengthened the season to help give trappers an opportunity to reduce the numbers with the springtime complaints we get from landowners."