Sunday, April 8, 2012

A Hike To A Beaver Pond of The Vermilon River. A Post to MWT and WBW.

With the early spring, we're out in the east track area. This is another abandoned railway track, although part is still used to shunt trains. Its a good idea to use the track because the bears may be moving around now and the track area allows you to have more visual protection. The destination is the beaver pond. The photo opposite shows the stripped railway bed, and the beaver pond to the west. CLICK ON PHOTOS TO ENLARGE, AND SEE THE SLIDE SHOW.

This photo looks to the west where the trail goes on. You can just make out a rock outcropping in the background. The trail is not straight but wider than the abandoned track on the west side of the river. There is a forest trail which we'll use to get back.

This photo looks west again, and gives you some idea of the pond size. It is in fact a small lake. There are numerous other trails that branch off this area, so the possibility of longer hikes is almost infinite.

Still looking east, this photo shows the eastern rock outcropping. The hydro lines are a bear highway that the bears use to raid garbage pails of a vacation area south of here. But by enlarge the area is uninhabited. 


There are two lodges in the pond, both on the far side. Beavers tend to build a work highway and it is on the far side as the trail makes them vulnerable to their predators, which are numerous.

The lodge contains a sleep and eating chamber. Beavers are not true hibernators, but they do store food. But they venture out in the winter.

Another close up of the same of the lodge.

This is the second lodge.

This photo looks west. The red sign marks the beginning of the actual track section of the roadbed. The narrowing of the pond also indicates the site of the beaver dam. 

This is the dam. Last year the dam was breached, likely because the water was high. Since then the beaver have repaired the dam. People sometimes point out the negative problems of beaver dams ie, mainly flooding. But beaver ponds protect endangered species, cause regeneration of forests, and clean toxins out of the water. All of these toxins are man made such as nitrogen, phosphates, and others.The conflict with man is really a quarrel over space. If man wins the land becomes contaminated. If we're lucky the beavers return and clean it up. This includes a lot of agricultural pasture land, because beaver ponds also clear up farm animal waste.

You can cross the dam and hike the wetland behind.

The beaver is a semi aquatic rodent. A fully grown beaver weighs about 14-27 kg or 31-60 lbs. They have a heavy layer of fat, thick fur, and use the musk from their glands to waterproof their coats.

They are perfectly adapted to the water. They are able to close their nostrils, and ears and have a nictitating membrane that permits them to see under water.

Their tail is scaly and used for swimming as well as to communicate danger. Their front feet have five fingers, which are nimble allowing them to manipulate the wood they use for food and building.

I put this muskrat photo in to show you the difference between the two. All the rest of the photos were taken at the beaver pond and show the biodiversity of the pond itself. The Vermilon Forest is a re-generating forest, and the larger numbers of wetlands and beaver have surely contributed to this regeneration.

Raven- Our Guide.

Canada Geese in Flight.

Geese In Flight.

Canada Geese in the Beaver Pond.

Male Mallard

Song Sparrow

Song Sparrow


Tree Sparrow


Male Downy

This Red squirrel was hiding from me. I returned on the land trail and not the track. The forest here is thick and makes it harder to catch the wildlife.

This Pine Sisken ends the photos. A Post to MWT @ http://ourworldtuesdaymeme.blogspot.com/  and WBW @ http://pineriverreview.blogspot.com/  Most of the information is from Wikipedia, but the web is loaded with excellent sites that will dispel a great deal of beaver misinformation. For instance you don't have to trap beaver to stop flooding, just use one of the newly developed pipes. There is additional information that trapping beavers doesn't work, others just move in. Apparently, the same can be said of the bounty on coyotes in Saskatchewan. The coyotes are apparently on the increase despite the bounty. 

71 comments:

  1. the beavers sure are cute varmints. so is that squirrel giving you the eye.

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  2. Awesome pictures! And, some really great information about beavers.

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  3. It's wonderful to see the beavers an experiment to reintroduce them to the UK is ongoing. I remember seeing one at a wildlife centre a couple of years ago and was amazed how big they are. Fantastic images of the rest of your wildlife and the blue waters are great to see.

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  4. Great pictures!! We have beaver here too in Sweden but I haven´t get lucky to come by a pond where they live.

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  5. What a beautiful name for a bird "song sparrow" and I'm sure he has a song to sing. I love the deep blue of the lake. Hoping you and Boomer are having a lovely Easter.

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  6. Great shots of the beavers and where they live!

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  7. I have never seen a beaver up close.

    Visiting late from Camera Critters. Hope you have a good Easter celebration!

    My Critters

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  8. Great photos! What a beautiful area! Love the Beaver shots!

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  9. I'm fascinated with that squirrel..what's with the eye, that is weird!

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  10. a mammoth post and how interesting too Gary. The scenery is spectacular; you see this most days?! I enjoyed your commentary re the beavers and their lodges are amazing too. I hadn't know they weigh so much. So much to see; I enjoyed it all; thanks for sharing

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  11. What a wonderful world you do have, Gary! Always love the critters and birds, particularly the beaver today! Hope you have a great week!

    Sylvia

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  12. Beautiful scenery! - and the beavers are such interesting animals.

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  13. Right on with the scenery, and the Beaver, fantastic.

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  14. The scenery is very beautiful. I love the reflections you captured and also great look at the beavers and their habitat. Your bird shots are always a delight.

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  15. Terrific captures as always!

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  16. Excellent captures as always. I love the beavers and their lodges. Thank you for always stopping by my place and leaving a comment. It's very much appreciated.

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  17. You live in a beautiful part of the world and thanks again for taking us along on your walk via the photos. The blue sky and blue water is beautiful!

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  18. Beautiful scenic shots and I love the birds, the beaver is a cool sighting. Great photos.

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  19. That looks like a wonderful hike, and I was glad to enjoy it vicariously. Loved especially seeing the beaver.

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  20. Delightful shots, Gary! It's great to begin seeing those lovely blue shades of sky and water in your photos. Spring can't be too far away now.

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  21. Those are wonderful beaver photos. We have beavers around here, but I've never managed to photograph one.

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  22. I enjoyed reading about the beaver, Gary. I'm glad humans are finally learning to live with them, realizing they are more a benefit to humans than a problem.

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  23. Beautiful place, very scenic.

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  24. not only did you show us this marvelous site and the beaver's dam but the beavers them selves!
    A great series of pictures I enjoyed thoroughly!
    Well done, cheers, Gary!

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  25. Hi there - great post. Really like the info about the beavers - maybe one day I'll get to see one in the flesh. Well, maybe!

    Cheers - Stewart M - Australia

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  26. lovely views and the beavers are gorgeous.

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  27. Wonderful nature photography and information.

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  28. The information and photos of the beaver lodges are so interesting and informative. Beavers are being reintroduced gradually in some areas in the UK with mixed reception. Geat bird shots too in fact I really enjoyed all the elements of your post.

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  29. Great post, looks like a beautiful place.
    It was so interesting to see and read about the beavers.
    There are lot of beavers in the area where we have our cabin.
    The only thing we have heard about them, is not to get to close to them as they can get very angry.
    Thanks for sharing another great post.
    Mette

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    1. Beavers are not aggressive animals!! When in danger they slap that flat tail on the water and dive.

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  30. Wonderful photos!! I'm glad to see your Song Sparrow, I wasn't absolutely sure that's what I had a picture of this week but seeing yours, now I'm sure!

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  31. Beautiful collection of bird photos! Love the freshness of the outdoors!

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  32. Great shots! I really like the one of the goose in flight reflected in the water!

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  33. I'd love to walk that trail but the fact that there is a possibility of seeing a bear - I couldn't do it! eek - I'm a coward!

    Thanks for the tour!

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    1. The bears are a bit cranky, because they're hungry coming out of hibernation at this time of year. Bears are common to N. Ontario, and most people have their very own bear story, even people who never go near the woods.

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  34. I can't get over that gorgeous landscape! Love the reflections in the pond.

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    1. The area along thr track is a long series of wetlands and lakes that ultimately empty into the River.

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  35. It would be great to walk that trail with all that beautiful lanscapes and you have captured them so beautifully.Thanks for sharing!!!

    Shantana

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  36. Beautiful photos of both nature, animals and birds! :)

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  37. Wonderful blues! And lovely shots of the beaver and birds.

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  38. That beaver walk is superb and the beaver pictures wonderful, but that downy and song sparrow are my favs. Great pictures Gary!

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  39. Great photo series! Lovely to see!
    Happy WBW to you!

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  40. The pond and the trail are lovely! The reflections in the water so clear.
    Great shots of the beaver!

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  41. Wonderful views! I loved the birds, the male mallard, particularly.

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  42. Hi Gary

    You captured some wonderful photos here I loved the lodges in the beautiful blue water and the shots of the beavers were great. It looks to be a really lovely area and you are probably still in the pre biting bug stage which is a great time to be out.

    Regards
    Guy

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    1. Still pre bug. In fact we had snow flurries to day.

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  43. The reflections in your nature shots are simply stunning and your wildlife and bird photos superb!

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  44. Thanks for another great walk on the wild side, Gary.

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  45. Terrific article Gary and fantastic pictures to illustrate your points!

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  46. thanks for taking me along on another wonderful hike! The pine sisken is a darling little bird. Interesting footnote about the beavers and coyotes -- I don't think anything can keep the wily coyote down -- they simply adapt.

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  47. used to sing, Land of the sliver birch, home of the beaver, in primary school in Borneo.

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  48. Wonderful to see your part of the world coming to life and those industrious beavers!! Great captures Gary.

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  49. Incredibly beautiful picture you show.
    Wishing you a good day.
    Hugs Hanne Bente / hbt.finus.dk

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  50. Great shots and very informative walk with you today.

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  51. Wonderful shots!! I love the scenery and the wildlife. Awesome bird shots!!

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  52. It looks like winter remains even as spring has arrived, beautiful photographs!

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  53. Thank you for the wilderness trip this morning -- I really enjoyed it! Sue H

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  54. This place is gorgeous, and I love the collection of birds!

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  55. Wow to your photos! I would love to do this tour in person .....
    I love your dog!

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  56. What a beautiful area! Informative post with great shots of the wildlife.

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  57. WoW....great stuff today!! you sure do share a lot!!

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  58. Wonderful blue reflections and I love those beaver shots - superb! Thanks for another fantastic walk along with you.

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  59. This area looks so undisturbed and beautiful! You did a fantastic job with your wonderful photos. I love the white background in your sparrow shots..

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  60. I think every place has a Beaver Pond... great detail and time you put into this post... thanks for taking us along

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  61. Great pictures! I love the male downy woodpecker and the geese in flight.

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  62. Gary, what wonderful pics and info. I love the shots of the beaver and the Tree sparrows. I think there may be beaver in my bog as well. It looks like there are some lodges far across the bog on the east side and I think I saw one swimming towards me one day . I thought it was a muskrat until it smacked its tail and dove underwater. What a sound!

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