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jeepwm69

Working on the beaver dams/ duck hole

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Have a spot on the farm about 1/2 mile from the house where the beavers dam up an area that holds water, and that's where I duck hunt.

 

The first few years after returning home were dry and the area grew up in lots of weeds during the summer, which was a good source of food for the ducks come winter.


Last few years it's stayed flooded, which means lily pads have gotten thick and choked out anything that ducks eat.

 

So now I'm trying to get the area dried out so that either the lily pads die from lack of moisture, or if need be I'll spray them.  Then plan on planting some wild millet and Penn smartweed in a few areas.

 

At this point I'm still in the "blowing beaver dams to let water out" stage.  I can't just kill the beavers because I need them to keep the area dammed up and full during the winter, but I have to get the water off of the ground for now, so I've been blowing holes in the dam using "Exploding targets" aka tannerite.

 

Works ok.  Not a very cost efficient way of doing it, but a lot more fun that digging in dams with a shovel.

 

Anyhow, I have two dam systems in the woods.  The "Main" dam is towards the bottom of the aerial pic.  There is a levee (put in by my great grandfather) that was originally supposed to keep water from backing up into the field, but instead it held rainwater so they blew holes in the levee, and the beavers have dammed up those holes.

 

Circled areas are where I want to seed for the ducks

 

2nd pic is the main dam.  You'll notice the water level above the dam is higher than the water level below the dam.

 

3rd pic is looking from bottom to top of aerial pic. 

 

 

 

 

food plots.jpg

dam 4.jpg

dam 5.jpg

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Further out of the bottom of the aerial pic is another dam, which is what is holding water on the lower side of the "main" dam. 

 

If I blow the main dam, the water levels will simply equalize, and the flow slows to the point where the beavers can dam it back up, so what I have to do is blow the back dam first, get that water flowing good, then blow the main dam so that the water will flow quickly where the flat tailed devils have a hard time damming it up again before most of the water runs out.

 

Pic is of the back dam where I blow holes in it.

 

2nd pic is same area, but backed out a little bit.  This is a LONG dam, but not much to it for the most part other than the main channel.  When I blow the main dam, water runs over the top of the entire length of the back dam, but not enough to wash it away.

 

Pic 3 is me and my helper inspecting a couple of days ago.  I gotta quit eating and get my lard butt back in the gym.

 

Pic 4 is the 'food plot area" to the top right in the aerial photo, showing that I gotta get a lot of water out of there still.  I had this drained a couple of weeks ago but a couple of heavy rains and it filled right back up.

 

 

dam.jpg

dam 2.jpg

dam 3.jpg

dam 6.jpg

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And had to stop for a snack on the way back to the house......

Cora berries 2.jpg

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So plan this weekend is to blow the back dam first, using 4lbs of tannerite.

 

Then immediately move to the front dam, and do the same there.

 

Hopefully that will allow a lot of water out before the flat tails can rebuild. 

 

Of course, then the question is, how much rain will we get this summer?  If we have rain occur fairly frequently, I'm going to have to continue to do this process fairly frequently.

 

I'll try to take a video and post it, although I don't think the site supports video uploads, so not sure how to go about doing that quite yet.

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That little one is cute as can be, not sure about the older guy....lol

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I think 4 pounds is not enough , 10 sounds about right , LOL 

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I'll be listening for the explossion, lol!

 

aww jeep she just as cute as she be! (red headed) plus plus :-) 

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I would blow the downstream dam first. If you blow the upper one first it will flood the lower making it more difficult. This way the upper pond current will help enlarge the outlet at the lower. Guys here like to put it in PVC pipe and insert it well into the dam.

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On 6/25/2021 at 3:41 PM, jeepwm69 said:

I'll try to take a video and post it, although I don't think the site supports video uploads, so not sure how to go about doing that quite yet.

 

I can help ya with that Jeep. PM me with video size and it's file extension (.mp4?) and we'll tinker around and see if we can get videos to play here.

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On 6/25/2021 at 2:41 PM, jeepwm69 said:

 

I'll try to take a video and post it, although I don't think the site supports video uploads, so not sure how to go about doing that quite yet.

I think what you will have to do is upload the video to you-tube or such and then give a hyper-link to direct member there 

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Posted (edited)

Have you considered installing a pipe with a valve on it to help manipulate water levels? Or a knife gate like used for irrigation.

the beavers might stuff a pipe with mud; Or pile debris in the gate. You’d probably have to operate the valve or gate after every rain so maybe that won’t work.

 

 

or you get a portable fuel powered “trash pump” and some two inch hose and pump it down. Your intake hose needs a strainer on it

Edited by Goober
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Wow , Goober has them beavers working for you , sounds like a plan , you can control the water level 

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We can host videos here like youtube does. We just have those options disabled, because video files are very large compared to images and other file types that we allow. If we opened up video uploads for members our storage, delivery and backups costs for those vids would quickly eclipse our budget. In other words we don't receive enough in donations to cover what might eventually quadruple our current monthly expense figures.

 

But whenever something important comes along that serves a need for a member I feel like we should do our best to accommodate them. We can do that by allowing a video upload here and there. Of course, since videos have never been tried yet, we'd have to test a bit to insure they can be viewed on all devices as we'd expect. It all starts with a PM....

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Hey retro are we still planning on a trying out a different web host??

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Yeah someday but not anytime soon. Got no time for a project this year.

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I was hoping to see video of a beaver dam this morning  and  wondered if any beaver where harmed or injured in the filming !!! LOL 

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On 6/25/2021 at 4:41 PM, bcsman said:

That little one is cute as can be, not sure about the older guy....lol

 

It's ok.  I have a good personality.  LOL

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On 6/26/2021 at 7:24 PM, PROV said:

I would blow the downstream dam first. If you blow the upper one first it will flood the lower making it more difficult. This way the upper pond current will help enlarge the outlet at the lower. Guys here like to put it in PVC pipe and insert it well into the dam.

 

 

That's what I did.  Haven't been out to check it yet.  I'm sure the little a holes had it rebuilt before I got back to the house.

 

Going to have to use PVC and more tannerite when I'm having to shoot it to detonate.  4 lbs does great when I can bury both charges deep and use det cord, but when shooting it, the top charge doesn't really do anything but set off the bottom charge, so not getting the results I need.  Going to have to use more boom stuff to get the same result!

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On 6/27/2021 at 8:29 AM, Goober said:

Have you considered installing a pipe with a valve on it to help manipulate water levels? Or a knife gate like used for irrigation.

the beavers might stuff a pipe with mud; Or pile debris in the gate. You’d probably have to operate the valve or gate after every rain so maybe that won’t work.

 

 

or you get a portable fuel powered “trash pump” and some two inch hose and pump it down. Your intake hose needs a strainer on it

 

 

I put some PVC in the dams a few years back, sticking way out in the water, but the little wizards figured out where the ends were and buried them in mud.

 

From what I've found they'll plug anything when water is running through it.  The way most people around here say to fix them is to drive tposts in the upward side of the dam, and then hang PVC a couple of feet off the bottom with wire, so the drain pipe is suspended off the bottom and they can't bury it.

 

That's what I'm planning, but have to get water out of there first.

 

A trash pump would probably work, but since I don't have one, that would be an expense I would rather avoid, and my tpost and PVC should be a more semi-permanant solution.

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4 hours ago, Fishfiles said:

I was hoping to see video of a beaver dam this morning  and  wondered if any beaver where harmed or injured in the filming !!! LOL 

 

Well I have to keep the little buggers around to keep water in there during the winter, so we have to "coexist".

 

Went out Saturday afternoon,  Blew the downstream dam first.  Got a really crappy video (had to prop my phone up in a tree), but blew a nice hole in the ground, but not quite all the way through the dam.  Dug out the remainder with a shovel and got it flowing, then went to the main dam.

 

Decided to go in from the opposite side from where I usually do, which was really easy in the winter.  In the summer, the kudzu and other stuff  was over my head, so I hacked my way through a literal jungle for a couple hundred yards to the levee.  Once I hit the shade the jungle became slightly less oppressive.  Set stuff in levee, backed away, shot, and nothing.  Walked up and the lid was popped off the top cannister.  Apparently my shot just barely skimmed the top of the pellets, not enough to set the stuff off, but enough to pop the top off the can, sling pellets everywhere.  Put lid back on, re-positioned, walked back.  Fired another shot.  Nothing, and couldn't see the targets anymore.  Walked back up, and I'd hit in front of the can, slinging mud all over it where I couldn't see it from a distance.  Cleaned it off, walked back, and shot it again, this time it boomed, and opened a decent (not great, but decent) opening in the dam.  Did some more digging to try to open the hole bigger to get a better flow.

 

By this time I'm wringing wet in sweat, and huffing and puffing pretty good.  Still had to walk back through the jungle, and up a steep hill.  Had to stop and catch my breath a couple of times going up the hill, and by the time I got back to the Foreman I was about to fall out.  Wife poured a beer on my head (and in my mouth) and cooled me off a bit, then headed back to the house.

 

Need to run out and see how much water was let out before they dammed it back up.  I have a live tree that has partially fallen on the upstream dam, and the little engineers wove some live branches into the dam, so going to take a saw out and cut that live stuff loose from the dam.  There happened to be a large live branch right where the dam blew, and it was impeding water flow and allowing debris to catch on it, so it has to go.  Wasn't an ideal place to put the charge but I had to put it where I could see it to shoot it, so limited my options.

 

@Goober if you look to the left of the tree in the first pic, you can see the PVC I put in a while back.  It sticks a good 10-12 feet out the other side of the dam, and they build a mud mound over the length of the pipe.  It's drain pipe that has little holes drilled all the way down the length of the pipe.

 

2nd pic is the hole blown in the downstream dam (first one I blew).  The hole looks deceivingly small in the pic, but it's about crotch deep and probably 4-5 feet across.

 

3rd pic is my scattered pellets after my first shot on the 2nd dam.

updam.jpg

hole.jpg

scattered.jpg

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Down here I see a lot of siphons over small levees , the pvc pipe runs on top the levee and out away from the levee so it sucks clean , that might work for you as the intake will be away from the bank , not sure how they keep it primed up , but see water flowing thru them 

 

nice size hole for 4 pounds 

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Looks like @retro made posting a video work.

 

Even though the quality of the video is terrible.

 

Wife didn't want to wade through the woods, so she's 50 yards behind me sitting on "her" Rubicon.

 

Phone was wedged in a V in a sapling.

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Better video from a week or so ago, down where our land butts up against my buddy's ground. 

 

He has a license for some slightly more potent stuff, but most importantly, det cord and blasting caps, so he can push his charges waaaaaay down in the mud and then light a fuse.

 

Same stuff though, he just has a lot better way of detonating it.

 

And yes @shadetree, that's a snorkel sticking up in the video LOL

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It won't play for me , may a fire wall or something ?? 

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Shows up for me.  Might be something to do with permissions.  Retro might have to do some tweaking.

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