I had decided to give my lap-top a rest for a few days – until I read the bizarre statement from writer for The National Trust for Scotland (Friends of The Scotsman, 24 April), which read: “We believe that the Eurasian beaver is native to Scotland and should be resident here.”
The beaver suffered an extinction event called human beings. As far as Scotland is concerned it is an extinct species. Dead. Gone. Extinct. Finished. An ex-species.
The numbers currently in Argyl and Tayside, following the extinction event, are a newly introduced non-native, and probably invasive, species.
You cannot “re-introduce” an extinct native species; all you can do is start again with non-native stock – which is what has happened. NTS may want to live in a kind of 17th-century wild life Disneyland, but I don’t – I rather like Scotland. What next? The great auroch, sabre-toothed cat and woolly mammoth? (same argument – and all theoretically possible through DNA manipulation.)
Come on, guys – get your feet back on the ground.