I turned, as one does at a time like this, to the Daily Mail to see if beavers could in some way cause house prices to fall, or if perhaps they’d been involved in the death of Princess Diana.
It seems not. The Mail couldn’t even come up with a link between beavers and breast cancer in middle-aged women, noting only that they have razor-sharp teeth….
So I decided to telephone Defra, which really does sound like an Eastern Bloc security services acronym. The girl there said she had nothing against beavers at all but said you can’t just let people import animals willy-nilly and turn them loose in the countryside.
Now I can see her point if I were asking about funnel-web spiders or wolves, but I’m fairly certain that the total number of people killed by beavers in the whole of human history is nought….
There you are. You will go to work tomorrow and 40% of what you earn will be taken away by Mr Blair and given to someone in a parka and wellingtons so that he can find out if field mice are scared of beavers. Meanwhile, Birmingham burns.
And yet they have time to consider a blanket ban on drinking on trains.