Walking around the yard a week or so ago I was very surprised to see that a critter had been doing a little pruning on a Black Pussy Willow perched on the western bank of the stream. Here is a closer shot of the tooth marks -
Then a couple days ago, I found this -
Mission accomplished, I guess. Unfortunately for the beaver if it was trying to start a dam right here, the heavy flows from all of the rain lately swept the branches that made it into the water downstream.
It was interesting to see that the critter tried to "cut" up this large branch into smaller sections.
This is not the first time that we have suffered some minor damage from a beaver or the like. Several years ago I was shocked to find that something had done a number on some of the Western Red Cedars that are planted in a row outside of our front fence.
It tore/gnawed the bark off of a couple of the trees, like this -
...and cut off the tree closest to the stream -
I'm not bothered by the "pruning" of the pussy willow. It will recover nicely, I'm sure. And it isn't a native, anyway. I'm just a little nervous about the large trees along the stream in our yard that could be a much more dramatic loss! I know that large trees have been felled by beaver deep in Wetland #3 behind us. I'll definitely post an update if we see more evidence!