Aragon given OK to go af­ter beaver pop­u­la­tion, sets fi­nal rules for Mill Pond

The Standard Journal - - OBITUARIES - By KEVIN MYRICK Editor For the link to “You know you are from Aragon if” see story on polk­stan­dard­jour­nal. com

Aragon’s beaver pop­u­la­tion is on no­tice ac­cord­ing to Mayor Ken Suf­fridge, as the dams built by beavers re­cently at Mill Pond have caused wa­ter lev­els to drop. Suf­fridge i nformed the city coun­cil dur­ing their Sept. 17 ses­sion of the prob­lem, cit­ing posts on the Face­book page “You Know You Are From Aragon If” show­ing flood­ing on a nearby prop­erty caused by a group of beavers build­ing dams along the stream feed­ing the Aragon mill pond.

The backed-up wa­ter is cre­at­ing a aquatic won­der­land for the tree-chop­ping crit­ters, but is caus­ing wa­ter lev­els to drop in the pond.

“We’ve been in con­tact with both DNR and EPD about the prob­lem, and they have given per­mis­sion for us to erad­i­cate the beavers,” Suf­fridge said.

Ac­cord­ing to Suff- ridge, the city’s plan was de­vised with the co­op­er­a­tion of Randy Dun­can, who owns the prop­erty in the area where the beavers re­side.

Work­ers will blast the dams away dur­ing the day. They will hunt the beavers at night when the an­i­mals re­turn to re­pair their dams.

“DNR au­tho­rized that, and we have waived the re­stric­tions in this case for us­ing a firearm in the city,” Suf­fridge said.

He said no timetable has been es­tab­lished for when the hunt will be­gin.“We’ll be work­ing with the prop­erty owner on his sched­ule for this,” he said. Suf­fridge said the sooner the prob­lem is taken care of, the bet­ter.

Suf­fridge also re­ported on a crack in the dam at the pond that needs re­pair, but said that it does not pose any im­me­di­ate threat of caus­ing the dam to break. He ex­pected to have more to re­port to the city coun­cil on the is­sue in the com­ing months.

Even though the mill pond isn’t as full as it should be, the city still took steps to fi­nal­ize rules for the area.

New set rules for the area in­clude no lit­ter­ing, no al­co­holic bev­er­ages of any kind, no boats or in­ner tubes, and no swimming or wad­ing. Park hours are set from sunrise to 9:45 p.m., as was pre­vi­ously es­tab­lished af­ter the is­sue was raised in July.

Coun­cil mem­bers voted unan­i­mously for the new rules, along with a set of guide­lines for fish­ing.

The coun­cil ap­proved the fol­low­ing guide­lines for an­glers: those 16 or older must be li­censed, a limit of 10 fish per per­son, keep­ers for cat­fish are 8 inches and bass 12 inches. All fish re­leased must be placed back into the pond safely.

The coun­cil also ap­proved a rule re­quir­ing that only rod and reel, pole or bow could be used at the mill pond.

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