Having trouble deciding what to read at night? I might have just found an answer. This imminently published book covers the exciting return of beavers to the Detroit River. It’s lovely writing and illustrations are aimed at children 8-12 but you can bet I’ll be reading my copy avidly and telling you all about it here, at beaver central. I’m attaching the publishers pdf which you can read or download for more details.
And yes. Let’s hear it for the beavers.
There’s a nice article about our Idaho beaver friends recent beaver count, but I’m sure you’ll agree that the choice of photo is a little inappropriate:
Oof! I wrote Debbie and the paper when this came out but I’m there haven’t been changes. Never mind, lets focus on the words which are wonderful!
“Helping the Portneuf River watershed, one beaver at a time” is the motto of the Watershed Guardians, whose annual BeaverCount on Mink and Dempsey creeks last weekend was part of that effort.
The beaver count is a volunteer effort organized by Watershed Guardians. And the results from the annual census will influence how many trapping permits are issued for beaver on Mink Creek, Dempsey Creek and other streams within the Portneuf River watershed, said Mike Settell, the group’s director.
Several Scout troops and students from Idaho State University’s Outdoor Leadership program took part in the annual count on Saturday, along with 32 volunteer surveyors known as “Flat-tailers.”
During the annual count, volunteers recorded beaver scat, tracks, and slides, which indicate that the animals still occupy ponds on Mink Creek and other areas.
Currently in its fifth year, data collected during the count will be shared at open house events for the public, federal agencies, and Idaho Fish and Game, said Settell, who’s an environmental engineer. The findings will also be presented at the “State of the Beaver” conference in Canyonville, Oregon.
Settell said the number of trapping permits issued for beaver on the Main and the South forks of Mink Creek has been reduced from 10 to five animals, and trapping on the East and West forks was suspended for an additional two years.
Beaver are the original watershed guardians, Settell said. The indigenous animals play a crucial role in flood control, recharging the ground water supply and creating habitat in a pond-wetland-stream ecosystem.
“Along the Portneuf, beaver create habitat for every species from frogs to moose,” Settell said. “This year we’re also looking at fisheries, as well. And streams that have beaver activity typically have more and larger native species of fish, such as the Yellowstone cutthroat trout.”
Meanwhile, a lack of beaver activity leads to an increase in sediment and a greater chance of peak flood-damage downstream.
Settell said Watershed Guardians operates through volunteers and by donations. The mission of the group is to raise awareness about the crucial role that beavers play in maintaining wildlife habitat and water quality within the Portneuf River watershed.
Love that mission. Great work Mike and Team Mike! I’m so happy to have your voice for beavers on the good side. In the past couple years Mike has even undertaken a beaver musical festival known as the “Beaver dam Jam”, and I couldn’t be more thrilled with their many successes. Idaho is one place where sport trapping is still more common than depredation – so its a big deal that folks are looking out for beavers.
Our mural meeting went very well yesterday, we have been approved by the art committee and assuming they have a quorum next week we are on the schedule to present at the PRMCC on Tuesday. Artist Mario Alfaro showed up with a canvas of his latest efforts, and we were all very impressed. Click twice to see a bigger version.
This artwork really focuses on our natural color scheme and boasts an egret and a turtle! Love the many beavers, and very happy to see the children in the stand of trees near the dam. So familiar! I’m thinking this will look amazing on the bridge.
Ohh and I found this by accident the other day. It’s obviously a computer generated reading of our wikipedia entry, but fun to see nevertheless.