Bird farm’s beaver litter leaves the lodge
Ellis Bird Farm’s baby beavers — Cutter, Flapjack, Chewy and Chippity Do Da — have finally been spotted outside their beaver lodge.
Until Sunday, the farm’s first litter from resident beavers June and Ward were only seen via the webcam inside the lodge.
“They may have been out earlier under the cover of darkness. But this is the first we’ve seen of them,” said Myrna Pearman, the bird farm’s biologist and manager on Wednesday.
Pearman spotted the family swimming around when she made her usual check on the pond at 6 p.m.
One of the kits was swimming around with its tail sticking straight up in the air. Beavers will slap their tails on the water as a warning. This kit’s tail gently flopped instead of slapped.
“It was kind of cute.”
The kits, likely born mid-May, were first noticed on June 2 when mewing was heard on the webcam. They were a surprise because June and Ward have not had a family since they arrived at Ellis Bird Farm in the fall of 2010.
Pearman said the kits are about two-thirds the size of the adults and look healthy.
And June and Ward appear to be enjoying the lazy days of summer.
“It’s almost like they’ve got their babies out and feeding and now they can relax. We’ve been able to get really close to them and they pay us no mind.
“The other night I was probably within a metre, and it was Ward and he’s been the more standoffish. He patrols the pond every evening and then slaps his tail so everyone knows he’s the boss. He just stayed eating. He wasn’t afraid at all. They are protected there.”
Guided tours to the beaver pond will be available on Friday evening during Ellis Bird Farm’s annual fundraising event, this year in support of building a new visitor’s centre.
“Hopefully (June and Ward) will be out and the babies will be out for the folks to see.”
Video footage of the kits will be posted at www.ellisbirdfarm.ca in a few days.
Last week, the beavers built a third lodge and moved the kits into it. A webcam will be in place in that lodge, possibly by Friday.
Highlights of webcam footage of the beaver family will also be shown at Friday’s event, which features music, a silent auction and refreshments in the bird farm’s garden from 7 to 9 p.m.
The evening will go ahead rain or shine as there will be a tent.
Tickets are $20 per person. Wine will be available for purchase.
Call 403-885-4477 or email email@example.com for tickets and further information.