As naturalists, we at Wanderlust Tours are interested in every part of the natural world. We love to learn the species of plants, each type of rock formation, and of course every variety of beer crafted in our home state. We'd therefore like to start this beautiful Tuesday morning by sharing some things we've learned about North America's largest rodent and Oregon's state animal: the beaver.
Oregon got on its feet with much thanks to the beaver. The fur trade was economically vital to the state's growth and stability. Years later, we Oregonians don't rely on beavers for fur, but instead for their cuteness! Just kidding. They help to provide adequate habitats for many other creatures as well as create a diversity of plant-life.
Above: The beaver here was seen on Sparks Lake at the beginning of June 2016. He or she didn't like the canoe (and dog) approaching near her home on the lake.
Above: Benny Beaver is the official mascot of Oregon State University and winner of the 2011 Capital One Mascot of the Year write-in campaign.
More interesting facts about beavers:
- The world’s largest beaver dam is located on the southern edge of Wood Buffalo National Park in Alberta, Canada. At 2,790 feet long it was discovered through satellite imagery and is twice the length of the Hoover Dam, at 1,244 feet long.
- Beavers store green branches underwater so they can eat them throughout the winter.
- They can hold their breath underwater for up to 15 minutes.
- The beaver is featured on the reverse of the Oregon state flag.
Don't worry, we'll feature Oregon's other favorite animal next month.