By John Harrod, Manager, DuPont Environmental Education Center
Occasionally, visitors to the Dupont Environmental Education Center spot Beavers swimming in the Christina River, right in front of the center. On a recent marsh clean-up in the 212-acre Russell W. Peterson Urban Wildlife Refuge, volunteers from the First Unitarian Church of Wilmington were treated to close up looks at a our resident North American Beaver.
The group spotted the Beaver just after lunch time. Beavers are generally nocturnal and can be most reliably seen in the late afternoon and early evening, but in the spring they are quite active and can be seen throughout the day. Located in a non-public portion of the marsh, the beaver has built a lodge in an existing tidal pool. During a very low tide, the lodge entrance, which is usually submerged, can be clearly seen. In many streams in Delaware, Beavers do not build a traditional dome-shaped lodge, or even build dams. Instead, they burrow into the bank and pile up large branches above their entrance along the bank. These sites are usually found behind man-made dams such as those along the Red Clay Creek at Ashland Nature Center.
If you are more interested in seeing a North American Beaver and other nocturnal animals of the marsh, register for the Night in the Marsh on Friday evening, May 13. More information can be found here.