Interesting Facts About Beavers

After watching a movie about beavers a few weeks ago, I became highly interested by their strange behaviors. I came to research a bit about the critters and came along some info that may be interesting to all of you readers out there. Personally, I'd like to see a Meerkat Manor-like show based on beaver's lives. Do you think it would work?

Water is music to beaver ears

Or at least, music they can't stand. The sound of running water is a beaver's main motivator in building a dam. A scientist once performed a study where they placed speakers beside a beaver dam that were continually playing the sound of running water. The beavers built up their dams by the speaker until it effectively was silenced. The noise drives them mad. Source

Those darn dams



We all know beavers love their dams. In fact, by building their dams and changing river flows, they are change the world more than any other creature besides man. They're quite good architects and take water flow into consideration when building, using straight dams on trickling waters and curved dams in raging rapids. They use these dams as protection from predators and as shelter throughout the winter. If a predator destroys part of the dam, it will be fixed overnight.

Also just like men, they won't stop building until the job is done -resulting in some massively huge dams being built along large rivers. The largest beaver dam was over 2,750 feet long. These dams are the only animal-created structures that can be seen from space. Source

It's Ok To Eat Beavers on Friday

No, that's not a naughty sex innuendo. The 17th century Catholic Church actually declared beavers to be a fish according to dietary restrictions, meaning they are ok to eat on both Fridays and throughout Lent. Beaver meat was a common dish by Native Americans and French settlers to America, so the decision was believed to be important to these people's behaviors. The church decisions are based more on an animal's environment than their physical characteristics. Source

European and American Beavers Don't Mix

Because the animals have a different number of chromosomes, they do not cross breed with one another. Russian scientists once tried to breed the two together. In 27 attempted experiments, they only had one semi-success and the baby still came out as a stillborn. Source

They're Our Only Hope and They're Terrible Pests

Beavers have an interesting role in the environment. Their dams trap sediments in the water, turning rushing rivers into peaceful wetlands. When the dams break, the sediment stays and rich meadows are formed. Some scientists claim beavers can help prevent drought and that they are our only chance and maintaining our precious wetlands. Source

On the other hand, beavers are notoriously destructive. They cause $100 million in property damage yearly and their re-working of river currents can cause massive floods on our nation's farms. They have been known to destroy whole forests and one beaver couple almost took out a world-famous cherry tree forest in Washington D.C.. Source

My, What Nice Sex Organs You Have

Beaver sex organs have been used for traditional medicines for centuries. Their testicles and vaginal follicles can actually help with a few conditions, but mostly because the sailicin from the willow trees they eat turns into an aspirin-like salicylic acid with anti-inflammatory and pain-relieving properties. These same naughty beaver parts are still used in perfume production, you may have some beaver residue on you right now- particularly if you're wearing any of these brands: Emeraude, Coty Chanel Cuir de Russie, Magie Noire, Lancôme Caractère, Hechter Madame, Carven, Givenchy III or Shalimar. Source

Canada Loves Them...But Almost Killed Them All

Beaver is the Canadian national animal and is depicted on the Canadian five cent piece and their first pictorial stamp issued in 1849. The beavers were highly loved in part due to their fur, which was widely sought after up until the mid-19th century. It was so widely adored that the animal was almost hunted to extinction in Canada. If the fur trade hadn't stopped when it did, the Canadian national animal might be little more than a memory to its residents. Source

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Check out Twaggies' very funny clip:

Give a Man a Fish - Twaggies by Twaggies
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