I have to admit, beavers wasn't my idea, it was completely my son's.
He is all into Canada this year and beavers are an animal we just finished learning about.
I thought I'd start off with a simple primer on beavers, it certainly doesn't tell you everything, but it's a good intro anyways.
- The sound of running water makes them build a dam. This is why, if a culvert is running water and a beaver is anywhere nearby, they will keep building a dam as often as you tear it down.
- They do not use their tails to carry mud. They carry stones and mud in their very capable front paws.
- Their tails are used as an early warning device for family members and other animals that live near the pond. They sometimes slap the water for fun, and their tails are a fat resevoir to help them over the winter.
- Their latin name is Castor Canadensis
- They are North Americas largest rodent, weighing 40-60 lbs, and are clumsy on land, preferring to stay close to water for quick getaways.
- They compensate for their poor eyesight with an excellent sense of smell and hearing.
- Beavers do not hibernate, in fact they build stash piles of wood under the water to hold them over the winter.
- They have a double layered coat, which is part of the reason they were hunted so extensively when Canada was forming as a nation. Beaver skin hats and coats were guaranteed to keep the wearer warm.
- Vegetarians, with webbed feet that are strong swimmers. Warm coats, large animals, beavers are an important part of Canada.
- Beavers are a symbol of Canada. The fur-trade was an important part of colonial North America bringing in people from all over to exploit this natural resource. It brought in money for the developing colonies, which fed a range of other businesses, all helping with the growth of our nation. They are seen as a hard-working animal and as such are placed on our nickel.
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