NOUB: (Not Our Urban Beavers)

   Posted by heidi08 On March - 25 - 2017ADD COMMENTS

A lovely report from Napa has made the “Best of the Bohemian” writer’s picks for 2017 already, courtesy of our good friend Robin Ellison.

Most Adorable Department of Water ResourcesCapture

A great feat of endurance, strength and resolve to make tomorrow another day is going almost unnoticed in the midst of urban Napa, after torrential rains burst dams and washed away homes, leaving some of its most vulnerable residents homeless, shivering in the cold. Not so much human residents, bulodge with carst the beaver residents of Tulocay Creek. “It has been a wild winter at the beaver pond,” says Robin Ellison, a Napa wildlife watcher who’s kept a close watch on the beavers since they made a short stretch of this humble, urban creek channel their home several years ago. During the drought, the beavers set to work on a simple stick dam, creating habitat for birds and other wildlife, rebuilding after a storm in January 2016 flooded their home. Then, in 2017, winter turned on the beaver family like some White Witch, unleashing three damn-blowing storms in a row. “Tulocay Creek came within a foot of spilling its banks, and the magnificent beaver lodge was swept away,” Ellison reports. “The poor beavers were homeless and befuddled the following week, out in daylight trying hard to stay awake.” Ellison’s photo of a beaver that had worked so hard to build a new dam for its family that it fell asleep on the branch it was gnawing, would surely affect even the heart of someone who regards nature’s hydrologic engineers as mere pesky rodents. At last report, the rebuilt lodge has an impressive foyer entrance.—J.K.

Ahhh that’s sweet so to see celebrated! And beaver guardians never go out of style. Great job, Robin! I’m so old I remember when the Martinez Beaver Story was the pick of the year for unexpected wonders. Now they can’t even be bothered to publish the story they sent a reporter and a photographer out to capture! (I was told last weekend, then wednesday and now I have NO idea!)
Never mind, this is better anyway.

Time for another nice article about ENCOURAGING urban beavers and our new best friend, Kate Holleran!

Listening to the Land: Dam, Beavers! Dam!

<As humans have come to understand and value the critical role of wetlands in healthy ecosystems, beavers—the world’s greatest wetland engineers—are finally getting the respect they deserve. In the first of several beaver-appreciation events in Seaside, join scientist Kate Holleran at the Seaside Public Library on Wednesday, April 19, at 6 p.m. for an evening exploring how to encourage beavers to return to our communities—and how to live with the results. “Dam, Beaver! Dam!” is the fourth of five wildlife-themed Listening to the Land presentations in 2017. Admission is free.Even urban areas, where beavers were long considered pests, are now welcoming beavers as partners in habitat restoration efforts. Holleran, a senior natural resources scientist at Metro in the Portland area, has implemented several projects to improve the aquatic and forest habitat along Johnson Creek on the east side of the Metro district, on Chehalem Ridge on the west side, and on other nearby streams, much to the delight of beavers. She’ll talk about beaver restoration research and her own experience with beavers, exploring how her team has lured beavers back to streams and how adjacent landowners are coping with the effects of beaver activities on their property.

Kate is an ecologist for OregonMetro which coordinates the city parks and open spaces, because Portland. She is a big believer in beaver ecology and teaches groups to spot beaver for different watershed organizations. I’m thinking she should come to our next beaver festival and get inspired to start her own.

And by the way, isn’t it wonderful to see two stories that promote Urban Beavers that are not about US? Think about that for a moment, and consider if you will how many such stories graced the newspapers ten years ago. Got the answer? That would be NONE. We are the river from which all urban beavers flow. Literally in Napa because that might well be offspring, and figuratively in Portland, because our success story made them unashamed to discuss the topic aloud.

Honestly, no forefather could be prouder. Just look how far urban beavers have come.

Because why not Blame the Beaver?

   Posted by heidi08 On March - 24 - 2017ADD COMMENTS

Oh those crazy beavers with their penchant for sinkholes and collapsed roads! When are they going to stop harassing us with their rodent ways and let us live peacefully. On ALLIGATOR lake.Capture

Beavers the culprit in 30A road collapse

“We’ve always had problems with beavers where we don’t have a bridge,” said Chance Powell, an engineer for Walton County

One of the great mysteries early Thursday morning was solved after it was determined that beavers were the most likely culprit for the sinkhole that has closed Walton County Road 30A near County Road 283.

Beavers? Beavers!

The Walton County Sheriff’s Office received a call just after 5 a.m. Thursday about a sinkhole on 30A at Alligator Lake.

According to County Commissioner Tony Anderson, who was present as county crews began to fill the extensive hole, a GMC pickup was crossing the section of road when the asphalt began to cave in. The vehicle made it across, but the pickup was damaged and the man driving it was taken to Sacred Heart Hospital on the Emerald Coast with minor injuries, said Walton County Public Works Manager Wilmer Stafford.

“The water that flows under the road became too heavy on one side and caused it to fall in,” said Stafford, who also was at the scene later in the morning.

 The section of CR 30A surrounding the collapse site has been closed until the road can be repaired.

On the surface, the hole appears to be about 4 feet wide and takes up three-quarters of the road in front of Alligator Lake. But officials calculate that crew must deal with a much larger area of damage under the road.

But wait, how do the beavers make the sink hole exactly? Are you saying they tunneled under the asphalt to get away from the alligators, or chew holes in the road with their huge incisors, or that maybe the road was stuffed with willow and they ate it? The article is a little vague on the actual mechanics of destruction.  But I’m sure they’re telling the truth, right? People would never blame a rodent for something just to explain away a problem that their carelessness caused in the first place.

I guess it will stay a mystery, like how beavers live near ALLIGATOR lake in the first place.


 

Come to think of it, maybe they can sign up for the flow device WEBINAR coming soon from our friends at Furbearer Defenders and Cows and Fish. It will be taught by Adrien Nelson and Norine Ambrose and you are ALL invited. It’s a bargain at 5 dollars. Make sure to save your space now.

Learn how to successfully implement flow devices for beaver management in your community with our upcoming webinar, Beaver Flow Devices for Managers.

On April 6, 2017 at 3:30 pm EDT / 1:30 pm MDT / 12:30 pm PDT, Adrian Nelson of The Fur-Bearers, and Norine Ambrose from Cows and Fish will co-host this engaging webinar that will focus on the “whys” and “wheres” of implementing these devices. Managers and supervisors from a range of backgrounds will learn to better understand the applicability of these devices, as well as analyze sites requiring beaver management, and address which type of flow devices are most appropriate. 

Adrian will walk through the different types of devices, and how to make each one successful, as well as various obstacles and needs that may need to be addressed before deployment. The presentation will also touch briefly on ordering and supplies to ensure teams have the right materials for success.

Norine will tell participants of her first-hand experience in learning about and installing these devices in Alberta, and let participants know about the broader beaver collaborative work on education, social science, and management Cows and Fish is involved with the Miistakis Institute, local partners, and support from The Fur-Bearers.

Participants will come away with a better understanding of flow devices, but more importantly why they are useful to successfully co-exist with beavers. A question and answer period will follow.

I actually didn’t know these good folks knew each other, so I might watch just to learn more about their interaction. We will definitely learn things!

Spoiled for Beaver Choice

   Posted by heidi08 On March - 23 - 2017ADD COMMENTS

Some days there is so little beaver news that I am left sorting through my ragged thoughts and trying to find something new to say about them. This week has been a beaver explosion, so I can barely keep up. First there is the smart new beaver page out offered by Esther Lev of the Wetlands Conservancy and some graduate students who accepted the beaver challenge. You will have fun browsing the projects. Use the link to visit the site which connects to each project. I’ll let them describe the ‘zine’ themselves.

During the 2017 Winter Term, eight graduate students from the Master of Urban and Regional Planning, Master of Fine Arts, and Master of Environmental Science and Management programs at Portland State University engaged in a study of beavers in the Pacific Northwest.  The question was whether better understanding the beaver could help us understand more about the culture, identity, and character of the Pacific Northwest, particularly for those of us engaged in planning and other activities with and for communities in the region.

The project had two components.  First, each student identified a topic associated with beavers, and developed a research paper that explored that topic.  All of those papers are posted here for your use and enjoyment.  During the term we read Frances Backhouse’s Once they were Hats, her very informative and engaging book about beavers in North America.  Thanks to Esther Lev, Wetlands Conservancy Executive Director, and Sara Vickerman Gage, we were able to spend a morning discussing the book with Frances Backhouse.  We gratefully acknowledge the importance of both Frances’ work and her presence in the class with us.  If you are interested in and/or care about beavers, do read her book!

Second, each student used their paper as the point of departure for creating pages for a class “zine” about beavers.  A zine is a short, self-published, and mostly hand-crafted magazine.  Usually combining words and images, the zine form attempts to both transmit information to and engage the imagination of the reader.  Preliminary research in Portland revealed hardly any zines about or featuring beavers.  We aimed to fill that void, at least in part.

3 screenTWC is who had me talk in Portland last year and is responsible for the art show “Beaver Tales” that is in its second venue. They are doing beaver-work wonders. I am thrilled that they’re on the scene and that all these students will remember beavers in their masters training.


A second exciting development came from our beaver friends in the Czech University of Life Sciences. They recently completed the English translation of their ‘living with beavers’ guidebook. There is a lot of great info on management and history, so I would take some good time to browse. There’s a great discussion of tree protection and flow devices, as well as some pretty creative solutions for preventing bank burrows. Enjoy!

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“Mní wičhóni”

   Posted by heidi08 On March - 22 - 2017ADD COMMENTS

A very interesting thread appeared on my beaver news-feed yesterday. It began by talking about the native protests of the Dakota pipeline. Then ended by discussing the relationship between beavers and water and Native Americans.

Why is water sacred to Native Americans?

The Lakota phrase “Mní wičhóni,” or “Water is life,” has become a new national protest anthem.

It was chanted by 5,000 marchers at the Native Nations March in Washington, D.C. on March 10, and during hundreds of protests across the United States in the last year. “Mní wičhóni” became the anthem of the almost year-long struggle to stop the building of the Dakota Access Pipeline under the Missouri River in North Dakota.

For Native Americans, water does not only sustain life – it is sacred.

Native American tribes on the Great Plains knew something else about the relationship between themselves, the beaver and water. They learned through observation that beavers helped create an ecological oasis within a dry and arid landscape.

As Canadian anthropologist R. Grace Morgan hypothesized in her dissertation “Beaver Ecology/Beaver Mythology,” the Blackfeet sanctified the beaver because they understood the natural science and ecology of beaver behavior.

Morgan believed that the Blackfeet did not harm the beaver because beavers built dams on creeks and rivers. Such dams could produce enough of a diversion to create a pond of fresh clean water that allowed an oasis of plant life to grow and wildlife to flourish.

Beaver ponds provided the Blackfeet with water for daily life. The ponds also attracted animals, which meant the Blackfeet did not have to travel long distances to hunt. The Blackfeet did not need to travel for plants used for medicine or food, as well.

Beaver ponds were a win-win for all concerned in “the Great American desert” that modern ecologists and conservationists are beginning to study only now.

For the Blackfeet, Lakota and other tribes of the Great Plains, water was “life.” They understood what it meant to live in a dry arid place, which they expressed through their religion and within their ecological knowledge.

R. Grace Morgan’s dissertation on beaver ecology and mythology? What? Why had I never heard of it? I went hunting immediately thinking that everyone else knew something I didn’t. I found the entire dissertation online at the University of Alberta library and just the abstract was enough to send thrills up my spine.

CaptureI sent it along to some beaver-minded folks just in case they hadn’t seen it either and Michael Pollock wrote immediately back, confirming that the oversight wasn’t mine alone.

“WOW! Heidi, what a total score. Just read the abstract, fascinating.”

1So I wasn’t the only one, and I settled in for a good read. I’m about half way through, but I have to keep stopping to make notes or tell someone else how cool it is.  I thought I’d share some highlights. Basically she postulates that for the plain tribes in the middle of Canada and North America, water was so scarce that they valued anything that protected it. They evolved a taboo system about killing beavers, so that no one wanted to eat beaver meet or wear beaver skins because it would ultimately threaten that water resource. They relied totally on the buffalo for survival for most of their needs. And the beaver was literally the “sacred cow they would never harm.

Because beavers save water, and water was life.

Then the Fur Trade came marching along and threatened that way of life. For centuries the Blackfoot Indians refused to help out hunting beaver, until the entire economy started revolving around beaver. Then their enemies who were willing to become beaver enemies started to get preferential status. The tribes they had quarreled in the past were suddenly armed with guns and ammunition because they agreed to help. Dr. Morgan was the first to pose that the sacredness of the beaver eroded under economic and hostile pressure. They reluctantly did what was needed and started to kill the thing that saved their water until all the beaver had gone the way of the buffalo and dinosaur before them.

abAnd do you think it might be important for a water vulnerable state like CALIFORNIA to know about this dissertation? Or remember why the things that save water are sacred? R. Grace Morgan returned to academic life after her children were grown and was in her fifties when the dissertation was completed in 1991, nearly a decade before Dr. Glynnis Hood showed up to study the same subject in the same area of Elk Island, Alberta. Glynnis said they never met, but she heard good things about her from colleagues. Dr. Morgan was an archeologist – not an ecologist. And some of the things her dissertation faithfully reports about beavers have since been debunked, like the fact that their dams never blow out. But she got so much right. I wish we had met.  She died at age 81 last February after a long struggle with oviarian cancer.

Now, if you’ll excuse me, I have some reading to do.

If water is life

 

 

Anything’s better than yesterday

   Posted by heidi08 On March - 21 - 2017ADD COMMENTS

There’s a nice mention of our urban beaver friends in the Bronx River in a different episode of the Chicago program I showed you with Riley earlier. I can’t believe they’re doing a whole program on urban wildlife without mention US but go figure. We definitely are there in spirit. Go here, to watch the whole thing.Capture

Thriving ‘Urban Nature’ in Three American Cities

Urban Nature takes a look at both unmediated ecosystems and places where humans are stepping in to save nature that is threatened by urban development. Host Marcus Kronforst catches a glimpse of San Francisco as it appeared before human settlement by venturing into a redwood forest in Oakland and by hiking through the Presidio, where a rocky outcropping shelters a shrub that’s the last of its kind in the wild. He encounters endangered birds in the salt marshes of Brooklyn’s Jamaica Bay, and canoes down the Bronx River to spot eels, herons, and beavers.

The Bronx River Bounces Back | New York

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I sent yesterday’s horror story to every one I could think of that might ‘pitch’ some grief for the beaver-killing monsters at the golf course in Alabama. I managed to get a new friend who’s in charge of watersheds for 8 southern states very interested, and an author researching a ‘beaver book’.

I’d like to think of it as my “Fly my pretties” moment. But we’ll see what happens.tt

We have met the enemy – and he is Alabama

   Posted by heidi08 On March - 20 - 2017Comments Off on We have met the enemy – and he is Alabama

I needed to do this for several hours before I even tried to write this story. I’m leaving the graphic just in case you need a reminder of how to stop that panic rising too. Get your bag handy. Because this is a doozy.

Birmingham golf course beaver kill a dystopian Caddyshack

The Great Beaver Slaughter of 2017 at Birmingham’s historic Roebuck Golf Course began one January morning. It didn’t stop until 17 beavers were dead.

Did the beavers have to go?

Yes, according to prominent biologists. Were the beavers political casualties? Maybe so, and in more ways than one, based on the statements made by the president of the Birmingham City Council.

According to golf course employees, the prolific and resourceful beavers were rounded up in January with “pitchforks” and “by government employees.” The largest of all, weighing in at 38 pounds, was frozen by one of the maintenance staffers for future consumption. This all happened after Birmingham City Council President Johnathan Austin visited the course, and produced a Facebook Live video demanding coverage by television news stations, and implicating negligence by, well, somebody.pitchfork

“This is real news,” Austin said during his video. “This is coming to you live from Rogusta, where something needs to be done about this. This is beautiful city property. We are trying to preserve the property that we have, take care of the property we already have.”

Austin plays regularly at Roebuck Golf Course, along with many other prominent members of the Birmingham business, political and legal communities. (In full disclosure, if I had a home course, it would be Roebuck.)

17 beavers killed with a pitchfork in the dead of winter by some happy maintenance worker. How’s that bag coming along? Triggered by a petulant city council complaint on facebook that the water was ruining his golf game. Breathe. Now brace yourself. Because the reason cited for this madness was the fate of one very special fish.

 It didn’t end well for the furry animals, but they died, say scientists, to preserve another, more favored animal, the endangered and federally protected fish known as the watercress darter.

Now wait a minute. If you’ve been reading this website since the dawn of time you’ll remember that the rare watercress darter was the subject of one of the LARGEST fish and wildlife fines in history after some city officials ripped out a beaver dam. Say, where was that anyway?

Oh RIGHT Birmingham.

BACKHOE BLUNDER

Almost a decade ago, a supervisor for Birmingham Park and Recreation ordered the destruction of the beaver pond and the man-made levee it rested upon because two tennis courts were being flooded. The backhoe removed the dam and levee, and the sudden loss in habit drained the pond and killed about 12,000 of the watercress darter.

Combined, the U.S. Department of Interior and the Alabama Department of Conservation sued the city for $4 million, and federal officials called the backhoe incident one of the largest fish kills in the history of the Endangered Species Act. The city settled most of the fines out of court after cooperating with U.S. Fish & Wildlife to preserve the habitat, but litigation associated with that lawsuit remains. Part of the deal affected the golf course and, by and by, multiple generations of unlucky beavers.

In other words, the backhoe savagery changed everything.

In the past 10 years, the maintenance crew at “Rogusta” hasn’t been allowed to step within 25 feet of the stream that runs through the course. Mowing, trimming, cutting and any other funny business that might somehow affect the fish hasn’t been allowed. Maintenance staffers aren’t even allowed to clean trash out of the water, so they claim. An old shopping cart was lodged in the creek bed next to the No. 8 green for years. Thousands of plastic bottles litter the water.

Keep breathing. So a eager beaver-destroyer brought the mother-of-all fines from Fish and Wildlife and they spent nearly a decade defending themselves in court. The negotiated settlement was “We promise to do nice things and we’ll never, ever, Ever go in that creek again. Scouts honor.” I remember being SO INSPIRED by this case. I quoted it so many times to remind cities how expensive it could be to remove beavers. I thought it meant that a certain part of our thinking had turned a corner. But I was wrong.

Just imagine how fond the good ole boys in Alabama were of the federal government telling them what to do on their own golf course in the middle of town.

Golfers don’t like looking at all the trash, but the single-minded beavers of “Rogusta” were made of tougher stuff. When trees started growing back along the banks of the golf course, the beavers did what beavers do: they moved in and claimed the territory as their own.

“The golfers are all upset because they won’t cut the vegetation within so many feet of the creek, and they’re always hitting their balls into the vegetation out there,” said Howell, the biologist and a former Samford professor. “Well, I look at it as just another hazard.”

But it’s more than that. Over the past few years, the beavers have transformed a portion of the golf course into wetlands. Until recently, the beaver annex was mostly in an out-of-bounds area, but the beavers weren’t satisfied with merely punishing the hard slices of hack golfers.

Here’s what Fish and Wildlife says about the area on their website

“Our ultimate goal at Roebuck Springs is to restore and protect the habitat of the watercress darter. That’s always been the plan,” said Cynthia K. Dohner, Southeast Regional Director, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. “We want to do what’s best for the fish, and our work is far from over.”

But beavers got in the way of golfers and the fact that they had caused the feds to pay attention in the first place meant that everyone hated them even more than they usually hate them in Alabama, which is a lot. Breathe some more.

See, in a perfect world — or just a world without streets, and neighborhoods, and tennis courts, and a golf course built around and through a large spring system — Birmingham beavers create the habitat that allows the watercress darter to flourish.

But there is no such thing as a perfect world for urban beavers, especially when multiple government agencies get involved, not to mention politicians who love to play good, cheap golf.

Turns out, too many beavers are apparently a bad thing for the watercress darter inside the fragile ecosystem of Roebuck Golf Course.

“The beaver is not good for the darter because, No. 1, the darter lives in the bottom of the stream in and amongst the heavy-growing aquatic mosses and the watercress and the eelgrass,” Howell said. “When beavers get in an area, they rip up all the vegetation off the bottom where the darters are living.”

You thought life served you a raw deal? Think again. The beavers out at Roebuck got it the worst. Consider this life calculus: The beavers naturally create the environment for the watercress darter to live, and then get blamed for also destroying that environment, at which point the beavers have to die so the watercress darter can live.

“I guess the beavers caught the short end of the sticks, so to speak,” Howell said. “It’s the beavers that have broken the law, and not man.”

So did the city council want them dead? Did Fish and Wildlife? Did maintenance?

Who killed the beavers?

U.S. Fish & Wildlife says it didn’t do the deed, but the service has trained the city in proper beaver removal. The key: Take out the beavers without taking out the fish. Why that involved pitchforks remains unclear. The U.S. Fish & Wildlife’s lead recovery biologist for the watercress darter said he has never heard of pitchforks being used to “lethally trap” beavers. A representative for Birmingham Park and Recreation initially said his department didn’t know anything about the beaver kill, and since then hasn’t returned follow-up calls requesting more information.

Together, it seems, the biologists, golfers and politicians outflanked the beavers. But only for a short while. Five days after the beaver kill, the water level at “Rogusta” flooded once again. There is no longer standing water on the No. 8 fairway, but it remains unplayable.

“For all the news stations that want to report fake news, this is real news coming to you live right out here at the park, Rogusta,” Austin said. “We’ve got endangered species that we’re trying to save and protect.”

And not to mention golf handicaps.

I wrote the reporter who replied that NOTHING happens in town to this creek now  without Fish and Wildlife permission, so someone there knows what transpired even if they didn’t do it themselves. I’m pretty sure that we can get our clue from the city council man who said “For all the news stations that want to report fake news, this is real”.  Does that remind you of anyone in particular? Someone  who loves to golf who doesn’t want federal agencies interfering with profit? Whose supporters happened to win an election in January just around the time those beavers were hacked to death with a pitchfork?

But what about the endangered water cress darters?  Remind me how Mr. Trump feels about the endangered species act, anyway. This was reported back in January, right around the time the city council member decided to kill 2 birds 17 beavers with one stone pitchfork.

CaptureBreathe.

 

Make way for Beavers!

   Posted by heidi08 On March - 19 - 2017Comments Off on Make way for Beavers!

It’s Sunday. All the cut-outs are done for the “Martinez-Loves-Beavers” art project at Earth Day. And we may well have beavers in Martinez. That all sounds like good news to me. But maybe you need some more, just to make sure. How about the appearance of our good friend Ann Riley on Chicago Public Television talking about why WILLOW is especially important to creeks. Ahem.

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The Streams Below Our Streets | San Francisco

Cities once converted streams into sewers to make room for development. But now there’s a growing movement to unearth these buried waterways.

They flow beneath city streets, sidewalks, and even homes: creeks and streams across the United States were once forced underground into sewers, drainpipes, and culverts to make way for urban development.

For more than 30 years, efforts have been made in and around the Berkeley, California area to uncover—or “daylight”—the area’s buried waterways. The term daylighting was coined here in the 1980s, to describe efforts to bring Strawberry Creek back aboveground.

In 1903, a four-acre section of Strawberry Creek had been led into a culvert to allow construction of a Santa Fe Railway right-of-way. When Santa Fe abandoned the property in the early 1980s, the land was acquired by the city, and a park was proposed for the site.

As part of the park’s development, the Berkeley Parks and Recreation Commission planned to remove the 300-foot concrete pipe and expose the enclosed section of water. Although the idea was initially rejected by the city as too expensive and dangerous, the commission eventually implemented the plan. Activists argued that the transformation of the site from a derelict railroad right-of-way to a natural waterway would provide stormwater relief, and create heightened awareness about the ecology of streams.

The groundbreaking project represented the first time a culvert had been dug up and re-created in a channel, and helped pave the way for the formation of the Berkeley-based Urban Creeks Council in 1982. Co-founded by Dr. Ann L. Riley, the Urban Creeks Council was established to foster the preservation, protection, restoration, and management of natural waterways in urban environments. In addition, the non-profit organization works to educate the public on the ecological, aesthetic, and recreational values of restored urban streams.

Riley was introduced to urban stream restoration while she was training in the academic field of fluvial geomorphology with scientist Luna Leopold—who Riley called “the father of modern-day river restoration.” Fluvial geomorphology is the study of how water forms the earth.

Riley shows jon what to do

Riley shows jon what to do

Riley & Cory plan the attack!

Riley & Cory plan the attack!

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Just in case you don’t remember Riley, she’s the awesome beaver supporter and author who helped Worth A Dam plant willow for the last three years which our very schizophrenic city helped her do and then promptly pulled up. Ahh, memories. Sometimes she obviously has much better luck. If you didn’t watch the video, go watch now. It’s really well done and we are SO lucky she’s on our side.

ann teaching


Our donation this week for the silent auction is an watercolor painting that comes from artist Patricia Manning in Tonawanda New York. When she’s not busy crafting, sewing dollhouse clothing or raising her two girls, she likes to paint the natural world she sees. So obviously she chose our favorite subject. What got my attention first about this painting was the striking rings of water, which is something I’ve come to associate so intimately with watching beaver activity. They write everything they do on the water surface, which is lovely to see. Thanks Pamela for your generous donation! We’ll make sure to find it a good home!