Montana Outdoors

May 26, 2007

Evening swimmer

Filed under: Animals, Beaver, Montana, Nature, Outdoors, Photography, Photos, Pictures — montucky @ 11:32 pm

After about a dozen casts, this evening’s fishing was interrupted by an old favorite visitor, a beaver. I enjoy watching beavers under any condition, but they’re especially fascinating when swimming in the open water of the river, where there are varying currents, rocks, pools, eddies; anything but smooth water. Beavers know how to negotiate all kinds of conditions with the utmost confidence and stay under complete control. They are truly some of the world’s greatest swimmers!

I have watched beavers swim perhaps a hundred times, but the lens of a camera sees them quite a bit differently than my eyes do and has the ability to stop their action. I now have a somewhat different understanding of a beaver in water.

He has seen me, but since I’ve frozen any motion, he’s not sure, so he heads my way just to check the situation out. I am fascinated by the turbulence in the water that the camera captured.


As he swam, he didn’t head directly toward me, but zigzagged his way. I took 6 photos from the side and amazingly they all look almost exactly the same. His swimming technique varied only slightly.


It was fortunate that any of the photos were usable because the sun had set and I had to shoot directly toward the bright western sky. No, he‘s not in a snow bank. There’s actually about 20 feet of water under him and he‘s swimming against a current of perhaps 4 or 5 mph.


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