When you've spent as much time at the dog park as I have, you notice when things have changed. Just like the bee tree that fell, another broken limb caught my eye yesterday.
This tree is next to a popular "swimming beach" close to one of the parking lots, so it sees a lot of traffic. At first I thought some dumb-ass of a dog owner had broken the limb trying to get sticks to throw. (I've seen that happen.)
But then we took a closer look:
Hey, someone tried to cut it down! Wait, no, someone tried to chew it down!
Yes, there's an industrious beaver living at the dog park. Which is a section of a quite large state park, so I shouldn't be that surprised. But I have never seen beaver sign in the park before. I didn't know we had them there.
I had to read up, of course, to find out that beavers do most of their gnawing at night, and they will fell trees for food, not just for building. They eat the tender underbark.
That must be the case here, since there's no running water nearby to dam, unless you count the South Platte River. Which would would make it a very delusional beaver indeed. But I guess it probably lives in the pond and got hungry for bark. Next time I'm there I'll go look for its lodge.
(P.S. I found an article about a very interesting woman who crusades to save beavers in Colorado. To read it, click here.)