Wikipedia tells us: "There are typically two dens within the lodge, one for drying off
after exiting the water, and another, drier one where the family
Their houses are formed of the same materials as the dams, with
little order or regularity of structure, and seldom contain more than
four old, and six or eight young beavers. Sometimes some of the larger
houses have one or more partitions."
Now look at the other result of their industriousness – felled trees all around the pond, with Wiki telling us one beaver can bring down a sizable tree in one night. Did the one who hacked away at the tree in the photo above just get bored and not bother to finish the job? Isn’t the purpose of all this cutting to get the tree on the ground where they can eat the bark? Or not? (Wiki can’t tell us everything.)
So yeah, it looks bad for this little bit of heaven but maybe not: "The actions of beavers for hundreds of thousands of years in the Northern Hemisphere
have kept these watery systems healthy and in good repair, although a
human observing all the downed trees might think that the beavers were
doing just the opposite." (Also from Wiki.)
One tree whose days were numbered is, according to this plaque, a seedling from the famous, dearly departed Wye Oak I mentioned recently. But beavers can’t read and white oaks make good chewing, so to hell with claims of famous parentage (presuming to speak for them).
Luckily, this famous seedling has a protector. My friend Pam lives across the street from the park and walks it almost daily. (Retirement IS bliss, she reports.) Her solution – wrapping it in wire – seemed to work and was soon copied by the park maintenance crew, who’ve since encircled all the still-standing trees with wire.
What I found most interesting is that contrary to our automatic suspicions about humans always behaving badly in nature, the park authority is doing nothing else to protect trees from damage by beavers. Despite MAJOR tree loss, the beavers remain safe in their lodge, still eager.