Beaver

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Beaver
Beaver.jpg
Scientific classification
Kingdom Information
Kingdom Animalia
Phylum Information
Phylum Chordata
Sub-phylum Vertebrata
Class Information
Class Mammalia
Order Information
Order Rodentia
Sub-order Myomorpha
Family Information
Family Castoridae
Genus Information
Genus Castor
Species Information
Species C. canadensis
C. fiber
Population statistics

Beavers are two species of large, aquatic, flat-tailed rodent of the Northern hemisphere. The only larger rodent is the capybara.

Beavers live in dams, some of immense size, which they construct by felling waterside trees. Though superficially this can appear destructive, the activities of beavers do much to preserve the existing forms of rivers and stabilize their flow, and provide significant areas of wetland habitat in their vicinity.

Beaver fur was formerly much sought after, and unrestricted hunting and trapping has done much to reduce their range both in North America, and in Europe, where it historically became extinct in Great Britain and France, though reintroduction programs are now underway.

Beaver Trivia

  • The beaver is the national animal of Canada.
  • During the 18th century, the beaver was ruled to be a fish by the Roman Catholic Church,[1] on the basis of the Summa Theologica[2] by Thomas Aquinas. As such, it may be consumed during Lent.
  • Though very similar in appearance the European beaver (Castor fiber) and North American beaver (Castor canadensis) cannot hybridize, because the European bever has 48 chromosomes while the North American beaver has only 40.

References

  1. http://www.chowdc.org/Papers/Saunders%202001.html
  2. http://www.newadvent.org/summa/3147.htm#8

External Links

  • Beaver, Videos © 2008 Yellowstone Association
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