Often associated with Canada, the beaver is very common here in northern Minnesota as well. The speed at which they can create their own habitat is fascinating and this fall I had a chance to make a few images of some local beaver activity.

While I was wandering around the edges of this newly expanding beaver swamp I could hear him nearby. He wouldn’t show himself, opting to hide in the tall grasses of the swamp he had made his home. But he certainly wasn’t thrilled I was there.

I had driven by this spot the previous weekend, out exploring familiar back roads, and noticed a single tree had been knocked down.

Now returning just one week later he must have had 30 trees downed and I could see the top of his newly construction mansion peeking above the tall swaying grasses of the swamp.

Normally I wouldn’t stop and explore the beaver logging camp, but the light kept doing interesting things as it was fairly overcast but the high clouds kept spilling some soft directional light across the scene. Not to mention I really wanted to play with my newly acquired Fuji XF14mm wide angle lens.

There were times the light popped out enough where it almost looked like I had lugged a bunch of strobes out in the woods, so I was happy to keep exploring visually.

Of course I did find a few interesting little mushrooms that were enjoying some of that fantastic moody light, so couldn’t resist making a few mushroom portraits before I left!

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3 thoughts on “Beaver Dam-Age : A short photo exploration

  1. LoieJ says:

    I liked this for a special reason: my husband has had about 5 years of free (except for all of his labor) beaver wood for our wood stove. We live on the Little Fork. The beavers may have moved away due to taking all the easy trees. The big dam is breached and it hasn’t looked worked on since maybe early summer. The beavers have a pecking, munching order of trees that they take, and they had moved on to trees other than aspen a few years ago, then started on other species, and finally some much farther from the water. What they leave behind is free fire wood. Plus their dam flooded a low lying area that had black ash, mostly. So husband marked those which were dead last summer. He does try mostly to take those trees which are already down, cuts them up, brings them back to the yard by man-pulled sled, and splits them on a morning like this (-39.) which he calls a labor saving device. Since 7/3 I have had a pinched nerve, so I never could get out on our trails or into the canoe, so your photos fill me in on what I’m missing.

    1. That’s terrific to hear that some good is coming from the situation! And like they say, cutting your own firewood is the best way because it warms you up twice!

      Sorry to hear about the pinched nerve, but glad to hear that I could give you a chance to feel like you weren’t missing out as much! Also, thank you for the kind offer on the canoe, etc. I’ll absolutely keep that in mind if I’m up that way.

  2. LoieJ says:

    PS if you are near here and want to get out on the river later this year, you are welcome to borrow canoe, etc.

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