North American Beaver Facts
- Firstly, the North American Beaver remains one of only two existing species of beaver. Moreover, the other evolved as native to Europe.
- This remarkable animal also represents the third largest species of rodent on earth. In size, it follows only the capybara and the European Beaver.
- The fascinating rodent also remains well known for its habit of building its dams. These it constructs in lakes and streams, for instance.
- The largest dam by this species ever recorded occurred in northern Alberta, Canada. It was actually discovered by satellite imagery. It also measured an astonishing 2,790 ft (800 m) in length.
North American Beaver Physical Description
A mature adult North American Beaver averages about 44 lbs (20 kg) in weight. However, some rare, older individuals reach 110 lbs (50 kg).
In addition, the body length averages roughly 35 in (90 cm), and the tail averages 14 in (35 cm). The North American Beaver also lives as semi-aquatic, possessing webbed hind feet, clawed front feet, and a wide, flat tail.
Individuals also possess two coats of fur, with the outer coat being coarse and rough while the inner coat stays fine. The color of the fur generally displays a dark brown.
- Kingdom: Animalia
- Phylum: Chordata
- Class: Mammalia
- Order: Rodentia
- Family: Castoridae
- Genus: Castor
- Species: C. canadensis
North American Beaver Distribution, Habitat, and Ecology
It also usually inhabits forests with running water nearby. This remarkable animal represents a primarily nocturnal creature. While it appears less agile on land, it tends to spend the majority of its time in the water.
It develops into an agile swimmer and sometimes stays submerged for as long as fifteen minutes.
The animal feeds as an herbivore, and prefers the bark and flesh of trees such as aspens, yet also eats weeds, sedges, and water lilies.
It builds incredible dams out of sticks, rocks, and mud. Often these dams comprise a joint effort of many beavers. Finally, the group creates the dams to keep the water deep enough to prevent freezing in the winter.