An elusive beaver at Camp Polk Meadow Preserve has finally been spotted thanks to a wildlife camera.
Signs of an active beaver population have long been abundant in the lower meadow, but the Land Trust hasn't been able to get a photo of a resident beaver until now. Many thanks to Jake Schas for setting up the camera!
Camp Polk Meadow Preserve has historically always been a home for beaver. Elmer Pond, once an owner of a part of the Preserve, recalled that during winter the busy beavers made it possible to ice skate right through the middle of the meadow. In the early 1990s, about 20 beavers--the last in his section of the meadow--were removed due to the difficulty of managing the ponds and flooding created by their dams.
Now we have a better understanding of the benefits of beaver in Camp Polk Meadow Preserve. They add wood to creeks, create side channels, reduce erosion, and improve streamside vegetation. In short, they are welcome helpers in making Camp Polk Meadow Preserve better habitat for wildlife and fish.
We are happy to see this beaver has a home at Camp Polk Meadow Preserve. With Whychus Creek now reunited with its historic channel through Camp Polk Meadow, we hope that beavers will continue to make their comeback.
Also spotted at Camp Polk Meadow Preserve by Jake Schas: over 80 elk moving through the meadow! It's been a great few weeks for wildlife sightings!