North American Beaver Information, Photos, Habitat and Facts
The Beaver is a semi-aquatic animal that can be comical looking with its large, flat tail and its long sharp teeth. Nonetheless, it is a fascinating creature and does amazing things in the environment.
The North American Beaver (Castor Canadensis) is notoriously known as a “busybody” who always seems to be up to something. No other animal can alter the natural environment as much as a beaver can. American Expedition is proud to present information, interesting facts, and photos of Beavers.
North American Beaver Information
A North American beaver is a large semi-aquatic rodent. It has long, dark brown fur and webbed hind feet. Its tail is flat and paddle-shaped and can measure up to 14 inches long. A beaver’s body measures approximately 29-35 inches and weigh between 25-70 pounds. Beavers have transparent eyelids which help them see underwater. The teeth of a beaver, which are used to cut down trees and other plants, are long and very sharp.
Beavers construct dams to flood areas which will then give them access to food and protection. Beavers play an important part in the environment and help it thrive. However, they are sometimes considered a nuisance by farmers and other landowners.
Beavers mate in the winter and give birth in the lodge between April and June. An average litter of kits is usually 4, but can be up to 9. A pair of beavers only has one litter a year. The babies stay with the mother for up to two years before they venture out on their own. The average lifespan of a beaver in the wild is 24 years.
North American Beaver Facts
- The beaver is the largest rodent in North America.
- A group of beavers is called a colony.
- The beaver has scent glands on its underside used to secrete a liquid that covers its fur and makes it waterproof.
- Beavers are monogamous and therefore mate with the same beaver for life.
- They may be submerged underwater for up to 15 minutes.
- These rodents are great swimmers.
- To signal danger, a beaver will slap its tail on the surface of the water.
- A beaver can swim up to 5 miles per hour.
- A beaver’s home is called a “lodge.”
- Beavers construct dams to flood areas which will then give them access to food and protection.
- Beavers are nocturnal.
- The sounds of a beaver include hissing and slapping their tail on the water.
- Beavers have an excellent sense of smell.
- Beavers have poor sight and hearing.
- A beaver’s incisors continue to grow all its life, but gnawing on trees helps them stay contained.
North American Beaver Habitat
The beaver is located all throughout North America and Canada. Beavers tend to occupy areas near a water source. They prefer living very close (and in) lakes, rivers, streams, and ponds.
What Do Beavers Eat?
North American Beavers are herbivores and therefore eat leaves, roots, aquatic plants, and bark. When a beaver chops a tree down, they will eat at the bark of the trunk but mainly want to get to the more tender branches at the top.
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Beavers are excellent builders. Here, a construction team of two beavers work on building a dam.
Beavers construct dams to flood areas which will then give them access to food and protection.
A group of beavers is called a colony.
To signal danger, a beaver will slap its tail on the surface of the water.
Beavers are the largest rodent in North America.