While canoeing the Rockwood Conservation Area yesterday, we saw a beaver swimming with only the eyes and nostrils visible out of the water.
It noticed that we were paddling to it and got alarmed. One cannot blame it with anxious young ones screaming and making lots of splashing noise. It submerged much like a whale does, and we clearly saw its back arching and then it going underwater. It surfaced closed to a rocky island, and took refuge under some logs that were floating there.This was in the middle portion of the lake.
Here are some picture of us at the moment we discovered the beaver, and the island it dived and swam to: (Click on the thumbnails to see a larger picture)
|This is when we first saw it and were paddling towards it. It dived in the water and swam to the small island at the center of the picture.|
|This is after we saw it surface under the logs, hidden away. We lost it afterwards.|
Later in the evening, we saw another one just by the mill ruins. The interesting part was when we saw a fairly large tree that was gnawed by a beaver so systematically, that it did fall in the water. However for some reason, he did not complete the job, nor pull the tree to where he intends to build the dam. This act was just a day or few old at most, because the leaves have not wited yet. The wood chips from the gnawing were all visible at the base of the tree.
Here are two pictures of the tree (click on the thumbnails for a larger picture):
The following week, I visited the same tree to see what happened to it. The stump was still there, but the felled tree was no where to be found. I am not sure if it was the beaver who took it away, or the park staff who did so for safety reasons (the area has a few picnic tables and are visited quite frequently). Here are the pictures of the stump.
What experience can be more Canadian than canoeing and seeing a beaver?