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12 March, 2002


Sunny, High 18, Low ~10

Let's Talk Science: Lakes/Ponds, Beaver


Beavers, Castor canadensis, are often known for their incisor marks on trees and for their dams. With long and dark, waterproof coats, they live in lakes, rivers, and ponds all year round. These aquatic

rodents are the largest rodents in North America and have webbed feet and wide flat tails used as a rudder while swimming. Their tails are also used as a lever for dragging trees, standing upright, and

sending warning signals. Their self-sharpening teeth are used for grinding down trees for their lodges and feeding on hardwood trees as well as aquatic plants. In order to keep their incisors (front teeth) sharp and short, they need to gnaw at trees and bark. Made from branches, bark, and mud, dams and lodges are used for shelter and storing food in the winter. Beavers are hunted for their fur - see below a picture of an underwater trap set by residents.


http://www.encarta.msn.com http://www.uaf.Alaska.edu/museum

1. Beaver lodge at the 33.5-Mile pond.

2. Beavers are nocturnal animals and feed on stored logs and sticks through winter.

3. Underwater beaver traps

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