Monthly Archives: May 2011

The Beavers

In our backyard sits a quarter acre pond. Three other houses surround it. It is home to numerous ducks, fish, frogs and beautiful pond plants. It has been this way for many years.

The duck population has steadily grown over the past few years and has become over crowded. The ducks recognized this problem and sought an answer. They decided they needed a bigger dam. It would hold back the water, enlarge the pond, and solve the overcrowding issue. They hired two beavers.

The beavers set to work building a dam where the water spills from the pond into the creek and heads downhill. Overnight the area of the pond doubled. Our back yard and the park bench on the lawn were under water. My hubby removed the dam and within a couple of hours the water level dropped by 18 inches. Our park bench was out of the water and once again sat on the lawn.

It was not to last. That night the dam re-appeared.  The neighbors were horrified, the overreaction was loud and clear, “They are going to eat our trees and yards. Do something.”

In the meantime the beavers have done some good. They have cleaned up the entire pond of all debris and deadfall. They have pruned back the stand of creek dogwood that has taken over one side, but they have eaten all the giant waterlilies.With no waterlilies for cover, the goldfish have no place to hide.

Enter the Great Blue Heron. He sits in the trees and watches. When the goldfish come up to eat he flies in and stealthy waits. He quickly takes of advantage of the open water and eats voraciously of the golden delicacies. Without cover the mother duck has a hard time finding a suitable diner open for her little ducklings.  The heron also polishes off the ducklings by standing statue still until one happens by too close. Swoop, another baby duck is gone. The frogs are disappearing as well.

Daily the dam battle repeats the beavers build all night our yard floods. Every morning the dam is removed, the debris shoveled up and carted off to recycle. The habitat is depleted along with the fish, the ducklings and the frogs.

Advertisements