TOMS RIVER - A Toms River neighborhood has become divided over how to handles the town’s beaver population.
The Toms River township administrator tells News 12 New Jersey that the town had to hire a trapper to catch the beavers after neighbors complained about the population around Lake Placid. Neighbors complained that the beavers have chewed up the trees and their dams are causing flooding.
About six of the 20 beavers that live by the lake have been killed.
Some Toms River residents and animal activists are fighting the town on the trappings.
“The trap is similar to bear traps,” says neighbor Michael Fullen. “They close and crush the animal in a very painful way.”
Fullen adds, “The lake's never been as clean as it is today. [The beavers have] basically eaten the lily pads that used to choke the waterway."
The township administrator says that residents have been tripping the traps to prevent beavers from being killed, and as a result, the state will be putting up surveillance cameras.
The director of Unexpected Wildlife Refuge based in South Jersey tells News 12 New Jersey that there are alternatives to trapping, like relocation.
However, the administrator says that beaver relocation is also not allowed in New Jersey
The beavers will continue to be trapped throughout beaver hunting season, which ends Feb. 9.