Maybe you were one of those kids that told your friends you never believed in Santa Claus. Maybe you always doubted the tooth fairy and the Easter bunny. You were the first with a sarcastic comment on the field trip and the last one to say “awwww” when they showed your class the baby bunnies or new chicks at the farm. Maybe you’ve never watched “It’s a Wonderful Life” or smelled the fuzzy head of a sleeping baby, but you’re going to like this post. Trust me.
By ANDY HOBBS Beaver dams cause flooding on roads and properties across Thurston County, but cities like Olympia are learning to co-exist with the buck-toothed critters by controlling their habitats. Beavers have built dams up and down the Woodard Creek corridor, which stretches north to Henderson Inlet. The dams raise the surrounding water levels several feet and often block culverts.
But in 2014, the city plans to install a device that prevents blockage in the culvert. Known colloquially as a “beaver deceiver,” the wire mesh fencing helps maintain water flow and allows migrating fish to pass through. The device costs from $700 to more than $1,000, depending on size.
Cities refrain from trapping or relocating the beavers because the practice is ineffective. Beavers rarely survive relocation, and there are enough beavers to replace the ones who leave.
Thurston County manages 68 locations affected by beavers, with most activity in the southwest part of the county. The “beaver deceiver” devices have helped reduce the workload for field operations staff, said Mike Clark, construction engineer with Thurston County Public Works.
That’s right. The city of Olympia in Washington is installing another beaver deceiver because they know trapping doesn’t work. This is why I maintain that the Evergreen State has the highest beaver IQ in the nation. Oh and if you aren’t impressed yet, how about this for extra credit?
Clark said the county builds its own beaver deceivers by recycling materials such as sign posts.
More good cheer? One of Cheryl’s photos is apparently in the Patch archives so it was just posted in Virginia, where an article is remarking with surprise that a beaver reached 50 lbs. Ahem. I don’t understand. If they used a ‘stock photo’ to show how freakishly huge the beaver was, wouldn’t that mean he wasn’t huge at all? I helpfully pointed out both mistakes. So I’m apparently very popular in Alexandria.
Drew Hansen (Editor) December 21, 2013 at 04:13 PM Heidi, I pulled the photo from the Martinez Patch story. What’s the proper credit I should give? It looked like a Patch file photo to me.
Ahh and a final present that is so lovely none of us deserve it. But really, this isn’t indulgent at all. I’m educating you so that you can tell beavers and other rodents apart. And besides. It’s almost Christmas.