Nature Notes

Vol. IV October 1, 1926 No. 12


After a time she climbed up into a clump of dead hemlocks and tore the bark off one of the largest then she went out into a small opening beyond and began to roll over and over in the grass. This was just what I was looking for, so I quickly dodged into the clump of trees she had left and unlimbered my camera.

I did not take any pictures, however, for no sooner had I arrived than I heard a sound like a flock of minature aeroplanes. It sounded strangely suspicious. One glance was enough to convince me it was more than that.

In front of me was an angry bear and three excited cubs and directly behind me, and not two feet distant, was something worse. Out of a hole in the rotten wood that Betty had laid open with her claws there swarmed thousands of yellow-jacketed, a hot-footed bees. I was between the devil and the deep blue sea, all right, but fortunately neither had discovered my presence. However there was imminent danger that I would be discovered, and that very quickly, so, I assure you, I lost no time in dropping to the ground and making a silent, unobtrusive, but nevertheless rapid exit.


During the week the Naturalist visited the extensive beaver colony located at the mouth of Fish Creek three miles up the Tahoma Creek trail. It was our desire to see what effect the new West Side Road, now under construction, would have upon the colony, and to see if the very interesting workings would be in sight from the road.

We found that the road is to cut across the end of the rock slide just above the dams and will do no damage to them, while still being close enough to allow a fine view of the colony from the road.

All this is well but we also found that no work had been done by the colony during the season. The dams are broken, the ponds almost empty, and no conspicuous cuttings of any sort have been made.

The site is not entirely deserted however, for leading from the inlet to the largest pond, across the exposed mud-flat to a thicket of young willows at the foot of the rock slide is a well defined and much used beaver highway.

It would appear that only one family remains and they either have a small dam higher up the stream or are content with a den beneath that great boulders that block the streams at this point. They must travel across the old pond site to the willow thicket beyond for their food. It is hoped that the on-coming generation will be more ambitious and "repair the temples of their forefathers.", for nothing would add greater interest to a trip over the new road than a short stop at this beaver city.

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