Beaver in the BackyardPosted: 09/21/2010
Today, we sat at the kitchen table eating lunch, gazing out at the lake.
“Whoa!” exclaimed Matt. ”That tree! Did… did a beaver do that?”
Life in this wonderful house involves a certain intimacy with wildlife (a fact of life we are thankful for). We’ve happened across a colony of flying squirrels in the attic, and turtles, voles, moles, deer, herons, swans, a flock of robins, and a host of other birds in the yard. So far, we’ve seen neither hide nor hair of a beaver, but this gnawed tree and accompanying pile of woodchips makes us wonder if an encounter is imminent… (We hope so — though the homeowner’s association, which manages the lake, likely does not!)
Beavers are found in every county in Virginia. They love slow-flowing water (like our lake) and typically build their lodges in the late summer and early fall. The season is right for this kind of handiwork (toothiwork?)!
[Update: 21 Sept 2010, 8:36 PM. Matt and I were sitting in the kitchen again, this time for dinner. It's dark outside. We joke to each other that maybe the beaver is out there this very second! We decide to flip on the porch light and see, just for fun. Sure enough! America's largest rodent is hugging the base of the tree trunk, gnawing away. It's too dark and far away for a photo, but -- ah, we interrupt this message to report that at 8:42 PM, with the sound of crashing, the official score became Beaver: 1, Tree:0!]