C’Mon Kits, We’re Moving Again!

 

Beaver
Beaver. Accessed from Bite TV: http://www.bite.ca/

In 1975, the beaver became Canada’s official emblem.

“The beaver attained official status as an emblem of Canada when an “act to provide for the recognition of the beaver (castor canadensis) as a symbol of the sovereignty of Canada” received royal assent on March 24, 1975.

Today, thanks to conservation and silk hats, the beaver – the largest rodent in Canada – is alive and well all over the country.

The beavers are pretty clever.  They change their landscape to suit their needs.  They build a lodge with an underground entrance. It’s partly because it fends off predators like coyotes, foxes and wolves.  Also, by raising the water level, it doesn’t freeze in the winter.

When there isn’t enough room for the kits (that’s a baby beaver) anymore, or they run out of nearby food, they just move on and build another lodge.

The fact that they can hold their breath for up to 15 minutes is a reason why they can make their entrances underwater.  They have huge lung capacities.  Also, they can divert blood, hence its oxygen, from its paws to its brain.

A beaver will down, on average, 200 trees a year.  Using their tails for balance, they get on their hind legs and use their teeth to break the trunk.

Did you know beavers’ teeth are orange?  Apparently that’s because of the high content of iron that makes up the hard enamel.

A comment this post has produced came from Lone Grey Squirrel (You would find the blog very entertaining, by the way) asked about a debate in Canada about making the polar bear our national symbol. I had forgotten about that. In 2011, Sen. Nicole Eaton suggested this very notion. Well, a flood of debates and opinions came out of that. Nothing ever came of it, but many Canadians had voiced their opinion. There are two good articles about this. The first is from Macleans Magazine, and the second one is quite amusing is at the National Post.

35 comments

  1. 200 trees a year– yow! And I never saw a beaver using a chainsaw, either. None o’ that sissy stuff for them!! I never knew a beaver could stay underwater for 15 minutes– remarkable! A very enjoyable and informative post, TK– many thanks!

    P.S. I sometimes have orange teeth. Usually after eating a bag of cheese curls… : )

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  2. A A most informative post and I for one appreciated it. Yes, even around here in Northern Central BC, the beaver is treated as a nuisance by the local government. Can one blame them? Any parks near water need to have chicken wire around the first 5 feet of trunk, This alone costs some money. However, while walking the cats we came across 2 beavers swimming with sticks in their mouths. The cats never saw them and the beavers were cautious but continued on their way. Not beautiful animals but it was quite hypnotic watching them swim by. I also never realized the beaver was not adopted as Canada’s official symbol until 1975.

    Jean and girls

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    • Thanks for dropping and commenting! I’ve never seen one up close, but have watched many videos of them. They really glide wihtout making much noise, eh? They must, I assume, since your cats were not alerted. Impressive. And yes, there are many legitimate reasons to not liking what they do. I guess I understand the love-hate relationships we have with them. 🙂

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  3. Orange teeth! How about that! I was walking beside a river once, and all of a sudden I heard this huge, “THUD”. Turns out it was a beaver slamming is tail on the water! Trying to get my attention to hurry it along and get out of his area? *LOL* Great post as always my dear!! Cher xo

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    • I had totally forgotten about that! There was quite a lot of talk about it at the time. Thank you for reminding me. I’ve added two links to go visit on that subject. I hope you find it interesting, and thanks again! 🙂

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  4. When I worked for the track department of the BNSF Railway, the beavers would continually plug a culvert north of Bellingham, Washington state, raising the water level in an adjacent swamp and threatening to undermine the roadbed. No matter how many times we cleared the culvert of woody debris (sometimes several times a week), they would always be back, undoing our efforts as regularly as we undid theirs.
    Perhaps if they caused a wreck and derailed some explosive tank car loads of Bakken crude oil, which now traverse that track, they would get the hint. Though hopefully it will never come to that.

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  5. I’m surprised the recognition came so recently! I guess it was used informally throughout the years until someone thought, “Maybe we should make it official!”

    An interesting post, as always, TK!

    Like

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