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Beavers raise water levels and concerns in Old Lyme

New London

OLD LYME, Conn. (WTNH)– Living along Black Hall Pond has changed quite a bit recently for one resident who has done a lot to protect his property along the water.

“I drove it down here and set those poles with a back hoe. I can’t even walk down there now never mind a backhoe.”

Dave Berggren has lived on the Old Lyme pond for fifty years and never had a flooding problem until some beavers moved in two years ago.

Much of his grass has now been replaced by invasive weeds and his septic system is compromised.

“It can’t really leach down because the water is backing the other way up,” said Berggren.

A corner of his house is settling into the soft ground.

“So if you walk into that room all of a sudden you’re going down hill,” explained Berggren.

“The beavers actually came this far up from the pond and chewed large sections of the branches off,” said neighbor Rick Humpage.

He says the beavers have built dams on the Black Hall River and the creek at the other end of the spring fed pond so water can no longer freely flow away from their homes.

“You go talk to DEEP and DEEP says go talk to the town and we’re back and forth back and forth,” said Humpage.

News8 contacted the town and the CT Department of Energy and Environmental Protection to see if there is help for these folks. In the meantime Berggren has taken matters into his own hands by removing the biggest dam.

“Every other day I’d go in and tear it out,” said Berggren. “Every other day is how long it takes for them to start putting it back.”

Berggren carries a kayak into the woods to get to the dams. He then paddles up to the newer dams and uses a hook to tear them apart.

“The gush of water that came down through there you wouldn’t believe,” said Berggren.

Temporary relief but they want a permanent solution. Berggren did get a permit to trap the beavers which are quite busy.

“Plus the fact that their teeth never stop growing,” said Berggren.

The trapper didn’t show up and his permit expired.

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