The Frisco Public Works Department’s stormwater crews got crafty at the Cottonwood Creek in north Frisco after receiving a call last year that a beaver dam was causing water to flood a nearby jogging trail.

Frisco Stormwater Manager Perry Harts said the city gets at least one call a month to remove beaver dams that cause water to collect in unwanted areas. After city officials remove the debris, they know if it was caused by a beaver if the debris “just magically reappears, ” Harts said.

This was the case with the buildup in Cottonwood Creek. Crews led by Supervisor Brandon Smith with assistance from the city’s Natural Resources group researched and decided to build a pond leveler, which is a device that allows water to continue to flow and prevents a beaver from damming up the creek.

After watching a video, Smith and his team recreated the leveler with materials, such as piping, that they already had in-house for about $50.

“The water flows through the pipe,” Smith said. “We built a structure that would protect the end of the pipe from being clogged [and prevent] debris being built up by beavers.”

The team removed the dam and in January installed the pond leveler, nicknamed “the beaver deceiver,” in the creek. The goal of the device is to help people coexist with wildlife, Harts said.

“Beavers play a role in our ecosystem, they just cause a problem when their ecosystem meets the manmade world, like trails and things like that,” Harts said. “We think the pond leveler is much less harmful to the beavers than picking them up in metal cages and taking them somewhere.”