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Watchable Wildlife: Beaver

Beavers can be spotted throughout the Catskills and in the neighborhood of the Wittenberg Sportsmen’s Club. The NYSDEC has posted some fun facts we thought we’d share.

Did You Know?

• A beaver can chew down hundreds of trees each year

• A family of beavers can eat up to a ton of bark in a winter

• With waterproof fur, webbed hind feet and the ability to hold its

breath for 15 minutes, the beaver is well adapted to life in the water

• The beaver is New York’s official state mammal

What to watch for:

Size:

20-25″ long; tail 15″ long

Coloration:

Prominent orange teeth, dark brown fur and a flat, paddle-shaped tail

Where to watch:

• Streams, rivers or ponds bordered by woodlands or small marshes

• Near active beaver dams – look for the lodge, a dome-shaped structure

5-6′ tall, 20-30′ wide.

• Look for tree cuttings and “chips” of wood near the shoreline.

What to listen for:

Tail slaps in the water

When to watch:

Beavers are active year-round and most likely to be seen early in the morning or at dusk.

You may also see one at night with moonlight. In the winter, look for large holes in the ice

on ponds that the beavers use to access the underwater entrance to their lodge. Approach carefully

and stay hidden-beaver are shy. Be patient-it may take a long time before you finally see a beaver.

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