Saturday, June 22, 2013

Back in business

washed downstream.
Remember that flood? I had a a chance today to take a good look at Minebank Run. Among other
things, I found this tree. It used to be part of the beaver's den, but was washed about 30 meters downstream. Man, that was a lot of water.

I am happy to report that the ruined camera has been replaced as an early birthday present. I might also take the opportunity to compliment They are a great outfit, with splendid customer service.

The camera is in the park. Who knows what we might find? (Personally, I'm still hoping for sasquatch.)

More later.

Monday, June 10, 2013

Flash flood update--It's all gone

the former dam. 10 June 2013.
If you live in the Baltimore metro area, you may have noticed that it rained today.

The beaver family certainly noticed.

Everything is gone.

The beaver pond is gone.

The beaver den is gone.

The beaver dam is gone.

That must have been one spectacular flash flood.

the former dam and den. 10 June 2013.

can you tell when it all was swept away?

The camera is ruined too. But that's small potatoes, isn't it?

UPDATE: I have a birthday coming relatively soon. The critter cam will be back, in a new and improved version. New adventures await.

Saturday, June 8, 2013

What do beavers have to do with Great Blue Herons? and an intriguing new question.

the dam. 8 Jun 2013.
I checked on the beaver pond today.
It appears that the recent heavy rains have done some damage to the dam.  You can see in the photograph that some of the dam in the foreground is missing. I also noticed that the water level in the pond is lower than it has been. And there is a lot of silt deposited on the shore of the pond. Given the heavy rain, though, I was expecting to see even more damage than this.

In my observations I have also seen two new things. An animal that hasn't been around before, and new behavior among the beavers. That behavior, especially has me curious.

a frog by the beaver pond.
You'll recall, perhaps, from earlier entries that beavers create habitat for other animals. The ponds they create are places of slower, deeper water that is attractive to other animals and fish. This probably explains the frogs that have been around the pond for the last few weeks.  And this may well explain the Great Blue Heron that I captured on camera recently Among other things, Great Blue Herons eat frogs. Indeed, the Cornell Lab of Ornithology says:

"Great Blue Herons in the northeastern U.S. and southern Canada have benefited from the recovery of beaver populations, which have created a patchwork of swamps and meadows well-suited to foraging and nesting."

Beavers create a lot more than they destroy, don't they?

The new behavior that I captured with the camera is what really has me intrigued.

I have two photographs of a beaver carrying a bunch of leaves toward its den. I have never observed this before, nor have I captured in on camera. What is going on? This isn't the usual caching of food for winter. Beavers usually just eat their greens where they find them.

hmm mm....

Is this perhaps the beaver father carrying food to the mother, or to a newly weaned baby? I haven't yet read of this behavior.

I'm open to suggestions.

There is confirmation that we still have two adults living in the pond. They were both seen by one of the park naturalists on the 2nd.

I'll leave you with a video I captured recently. Just one of the beavers being a beaver.

Life is good.

More later.